UTM secretary general Patricia Kaliati has hinted that the party may call on the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) for a full recount of the votes albeit increasing election anomalies.
In an interview on the sidelines of pandemonium on Friday at MEC head office over a truck suspected to have been carrying pre-marked votes from Chikwawa, UTM secretary general Patricia Kaliati urged MEC to “put its house in order to maintain its credibility.”
“I mean, we understand that anomalies do happen in any election but this time they seem worse as regards the pace at which the commission is reacting to complaints.
“We have a strong feeling that some MEC officials are working so hard to undermine the credibility of the chairperson. Signs are there that the election is marred by fraudulent activities. This is why we may ask for a total recount of the votes from the districts to ascertain the winner.”
During a press conference she held at the national tally centre in Blantyre, on Friday afternoon, MEC chairperson Jane Ansah explained the commission had received 147 election-related complaints from various stakeholders.
Kaliati had gone to the commission’s head office to represent her party as the commission had insisted to open the disputed truck contents in full view of all the stakeholders.
The meeting –which had began in a tense mood—ended on a promising at the intervention of Police Commissioner responsible for southern region Sledge Yoosuf who did his best to calm the waters.
However, there was still some comic end to it when Yoosuf accused Amida Mia, who is wife to Malawi Congress Party vice president Sidik Mia, for allegedly abducting two Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) officials- Gerald Viola and Ben Khuleya, a former police officer— who had also followed the said truck from Chikwawa.
Mia pleaded her innocence on the matter, arguing she had come with just a handful of her sympathizers.
“I may be missing something here. Bwana commissioner, you being part of the national security apparatus, you mean you are asking me—a civilian— to locate men I never knew were following me in the first place?” she queried.
Mia added: “Spare me the trouble. Unless this is some kind of a joke but do you really expect grown up men like those politicians just get kidnapped here, in full view of the armed police and soldiers…and you are surely accusing a woman over their ordeal?”
Her reaction attracted some chuckles from those around, including Yoosuf himself who reminded the gathering to exercise calm amid heightened tension widely believed to be caused by the delayed poll results.