High court in Malawi through its President Judge Healey Potani, has nullified the 2019 presidential results in which Peter Mutharika was announced the winner by the Malawi Electoral Commission.
Reading the ruling for more than four hours, Potani said the ruling is accordance to the country’s constitution and violation of some electoral system. In the ruling, the lead judge indicated that MEC failed to conduct the electoral process in accordance to electoral laws.
The constitutional courts said the ruling is based on the use of duplicate tally sheets without plausible justification, it accepted tally sheets that were tippexed, allegedly accepted results recorded on fake tally; It altered, varied and transmitted results without regard to original figures; allegedly failed to notice alterations in terms of vote records in its system and corresponding tally sheets.
The ruling also alleges that MEC adopted, accepted and used result sheets from a stream to represent total votes for a polling centre; accepted and used results tally sheets from centres where total sum of used and unused ballot papers was lower than total sum of ballot papers issued; and announced final presidential polls results before results from some centres were uploaded in its system.
During the reading, Potani said the petitioners Lazarus Chakwera and Saulos Chilima wanted
a declaration that the election was null and avoid,
failure by MEC to remedy the non-compliance and irregularities in the conduct of the elections amounts to a grave violation of sections 76,77 and 40 of the Constitution, a declaration that President Peter Mutharika was not duly elected as president and that he did not obtain a true majority of the votes polled.
Meanwhile, the court has ordered fresh presidential elections within a period of 150 days.