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2019 Malawian general election

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2019 Malawian general election

← 2014 21 May 2019 2020 →
  Arthur Peter Mutharika 2014 (cropped).jpg Saulos Klaus Chilima, Vice President of Malawi 2017 (cropped).jpg
Nominee Peter Mutharika Lazarus Chakwera Saulos Chilima
Party Democratic Progressive Party (Malawi) Malawi Congress Party UTM
Running mate Everton Chimulirenji Sidik Mia Michael Usi
Popular vote 1,940,709 1,781,740 1,018,369
Percentage 38.57% 35.41% 20.24%

President before election

Peter Mutharika
Democratic Progressive Party (Malawi)

Elected President

Results annulled
Fresh elections ordered

Template:Politics of Malawi

General elections were held in Malawi on 21 May 2019 to elect the President, National Assembly and local government councillors.[1] Incumbent President Peter Mutharika of the Democratic Progressive Party was re-elected, with his party remaining the largest in the National Assembly. However, on 3 February 2020, the Constitutional Court annulled the presidential election results due to evidence of irregularities, and ordered fresh elections be held.[2]

Electoral system[edit source | edit]

The President of Malawi is elected using the first-past-the-post system; the candidate that receives the most votes is the winner of the election.[3] The 193 members of the National Assembly are also elected by first-past-the-post voting in single-member constituencies.[4]

Presidential candidates[edit source | edit]

A total of ten candidates registered to contest the elections.[5] Incumbent President Peter Mutharika of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) ran for a second term in office.[6] Vice-President Saulos Chilima also contested the election as the United Transformation Movement (UTM) candidate, having left the DPP in 2018.[7] The other candidates included Lazarus Chakwera (Malawi Congress Party) and Atupele Muluzi (United Democratic Front).

Former president Joyce Banda (People's Party) had originally planned to run for the presidency, but withdrew her candidacy two months before the election;[8] she later endorsed opposition candidate Lazarus Chakwera.[9][10] Ras Chikomeni Chirwa was disqualified due to lack of funds and failing to collect enough signatures.[11]

Results[edit source | edit]

President[edit source | edit]

Candidate Party Votes %
Peter Mutharika Democratic Progressive Party 1,940,709 38.57
Lazarus Chakwera Malawi Congress Party 1,781,740 35.41
Saulos Chilima United Transformation Movement 1,018,369 20.24
Atupele Muluzi United Democratic Front 235,164 4.67
Peter Kuwani Mbakuwaku Movement for Development 20,369 0.40
John Eugenes Chisi Umodzi Party 19,187 0.38
Hadwick Kaliya Independent 15,726 0.31
Invalid/blank votes 74,719
Total 5,105,983 100
Registered voters/turnout 6,859,570 74.44
Source: MEC

National Assembly[edit source | edit]

Party Vote % Seat +/–
Democratic Progressive Party 62 +11
Malawi Congress Party 55 +7
United Democratic Front 10 –4
People's Party 5 –21
United Transformation Movement 4 New
Alliance for Democracy 1 0
Independents 55 +3
To be determined 1
Invalid/blank votes
Total 100 193 0
Registered voters/turnout
Source: Maravi Post

Local elections[edit source | edit]

Party Votes % Seats +/–
Democratic Progressive Party
Malawi Congress Party
United Transformation Movement New
Independents New
Invalid/blank Votes
Total 100
Registered voters/turnout 6,859,570
Source: MEC, NPL

Aftermath[edit source | edit]

The results of the 2019 elections were highly controversial and opposition leaders led by Lazarus Chakwera and Saulos Chilima disputed the results in court. Nationwide protests were held in May, June, and July 2019 in which supporters of the opposition accused the results of being rigged by Mutharika and Jane Ansah, chairperson of the Malawi Electoral Commission, calling for Ansah’s resignation. Malawian youth organised a "Jane Ansah Must Fall" campaign, which included days of protests in several cities. In response, thousands of women in Malawi held "I am Jane Ansah" solidarity protests after alleging that Ansah was the victim of gender discrimination.[12][13]

On 3 February 2020, the Constitutional Court judges arrived in Lilongwe to read the disputed presidential election results judgement after travelling in a military vehicle with a heavy police escort. The judges took turns to read the 500-page decision over more than seven hours.[14] The ruling nullified the results of the presidential election, concluding they had not met the standards of a free and fair election and that the Malawi Electoral Commission had failed to uphold its constitutional responsibilities. The judgement cited tampering of results, failure to address complaints raised by opposition candidates, and numerous other malpractices.[2] The ruling also called into question the use of a plurality system in the presidential elections, stating the Malawi Constitution requires a majority of votes.[2]

Mutharika was declared not duly elected and thus no longer President. The judges ordered fresh elections be held within 150 days.[15]

References[edit source | edit]

  1. MEC announces Malawi tripartite election date: May 21 2019 Nyasa Times, 21 February 2018
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Lua error in ...ribunto/includes/engines/LuaCommon/lualib/mwInit.lua at line 23: bad argument #1 to 'old_ipairs' (table expected, got nil).
  3. Republic of Malawi: Election for President IFES
  4. Electoral system IPU
  5. 10 to contest for presidency in Malawi May polls Xinhua, 9 February 2019
  6. Malawi's Mutharika Insists He Will Seek Final Presidential Term in 2019 Nyasa Times, 16 May 2018
  7. Malawi Vice President Saulos Chilima turns opposition candidate in race for polls in May Archived 28 May 2019 at the Wayback Machine Gulf Times, 14 January 2019
  8. Ex-president Banda pulls out of Malawi presidential race Reuters, 14 March 2019
  9. Lua error in ...ribunto/includes/engines/LuaCommon/lualib/mwInit.lua at line 23: bad argument #1 to 'old_ipairs' (table expected, got nil).
  10. Lua error in ...ribunto/includes/engines/LuaCommon/lualib/mwInit.lua at line 23: bad argument #1 to 'old_ipairs' (table expected, got nil).
  11. Ras Chikomeni pursuing case to be on ballot: Judge refuses injunction ex-parte Nyasa Times, 9 February 2019
  12. Lua error in ...ribunto/includes/engines/LuaCommon/lualib/mwInit.lua at line 23: bad argument #1 to 'old_ipairs' (table expected, got nil).
  13. Lua error in ...ribunto/includes/engines/LuaCommon/lualib/mwInit.lua at line 23: bad argument #1 to 'old_ipairs' (table expected, got nil).
  14. Lua error in ...ribunto/includes/engines/LuaCommon/lualib/mwInit.lua at line 23: bad argument #1 to 'old_ipairs' (table expected, got nil).
  15. Lua error in ...ribunto/includes/engines/LuaCommon/lualib/mwInit.lua at line 23: bad argument #1 to 'old_ipairs' (table expected, got nil).

Template:Malawian elections