Gregory Gondwe, Malawi Best Blogger 2014

Monday, October 20, 2008

ELECTIONS PROCESS IN CHITIPA FACES A HURDLE

Registration process in Chitipa District faced an upheaval over the weekend as members of elections staff were refusing to go to their respective registration centres due to what they called poor working conditions.
It took a great deal of pleading from the Regional Elections Officer who flew to the district in a military helicopter for the workers to soften up their stand.
Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) Chief Elections Officer Mr. David Bandawe confirmed of the incident to this blog.
The workers confided to this blog that they have demanded that the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) improve their working environment if they want the process to be a success.
Registration in the whole of Chitipa district, which is part of the Fourth phase of the process, started on Monday October 20 and will end on November 2 alongside other parts of the country.
The workers who declined to give out their identities cried foul over lack of commitment by the electoral body to improve their working conditions.
They claimed the body has no consideration over their welfare, citing late payment and inhuman mode of transporting them to various centers.
Some of the elections staff that were in Mzimba Hora claimed that MEC had forgotten them for two days in seven registration centres they were at and had to remember about them when they were looking into the logistics of the same activity in Chitipa.
On the night of October 17, the staff claim they were packed in the body of an ESCOM track, which transported them through out the night to Chitipa and were never paid their dues for the extension in time.
They also claim that Supervisors are paid K30, 000 for 14 days work and K25,000 for Camera personnel, in between there are four days that are also spent when they are moving from one registration area to another and these days are not factored into their payment provision.
Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) Chief Elections Officer Mr. David Bandawe told ZBS that indeed there were problems in Chitipa and have since been resolved.

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