By Macdonald Thom & Wezzie Gausi:
Civil society organisations (CSOs), under Human Rights Defender Coalition (HRDC) banner, have said they are disappointed by Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) Chairperson Justice Jane Ansah’s remarks on calls for her to resign.
At a press conference in Lilongwe Tuesday, HRDC Chairperson, Timothy Mtambo, said the statement which Ansah made in an interview with Zodiak Broadcasting Station (ZBS) on Monday was unfortunate.
Mtambo said Malawians had a right to hold demonstrations and call for her resignation because she did not allegedly handle the May 21 Tripartite Elections professionally.
“It could have been better had Ansah remained quiet without commenting after the demonstrations as that could have eased people’s expectations,” Mtambo said.
“Just because political parties have taken the commission to court does not mean people will not exercise their rights. We want to assure the country that, come the 4th of July, we are going to hold vigils countrywide to show seriousness that we want Ansah to step down.”
HRDC Vice Chairperson, Gift Trapence, said if Ansah would not resign, they would continue with the vigils from July 8 to 12 2019.
Malawi Congress Party president Lazarus Chakwera and his UTM counterpart Saulos Chilima petitioned the High Court in Lilongwe, seeking nullification of presidential election results, citing a number of irregularities.
Ansah told ZBS that she cannot resign as she was waiting for the conclusion of the court case, describing the demonstrations as “mob justice”.