L-R: Lazarus Chakwera. Saulos Chilima and President Peter Mutharika

BY GRACIUM C. MKONDA

Just days after Malawi Elections Commission Chairperson, Jane Ansah, declared Prof. Peter Mutharika of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) a winner of the tightly contested presidential election, Dr. Lazarus Chakwera of the oldest political party in Malawi, the Malawi Congress Party (MCP), and Dr. Saulos Chilima of United Transformation Movement (UTM) party sought the refuge of the courts, disputing the outcome of the elections.

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Chakwera and Chilima came second and third respectively.

While challenging the victory of Mutharika in court, both Chakwera and Chilima claimed “the elections were free but not fair.”

The lawyers for the respondents argued that the elections were marred with illegalities that included the use of correction fluid tippex on the electoral documents

It is expected that the Malawi constitutional court will deliver its ruling before Monday, 3rd February, 2020, and the discontented parties have an option to appeal the ruling of the Constitutional Court to the Supreme Court of Appeal.

The outcome of election case will be a litmus test for the political tolerance that the southern African country has basked in for decades.

Mutharika narrowly won the election with 38.57% of the valid votes cast.

GRACIUM C. MKONDA

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