Malawi election: President Mutharika re-elected after courtroom battle

Malawi's president casts his ballot in his home town on May 21Picture copyright

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President Mutharika had confronted questions over his age and well being

Malawi’s President Peter Mutharika has been narrowly elected to a second time period in workplace with 38.5% of the vote.

The incumbent chief, 78, had confronted stiff competitors within the 21 Could election, together with from his deputy.

The outcome was introduced on Monday after an injunction ordered by the nation’s excessive courtroom was lifted.

Challenger Lazarus Chakwera, who completed in second place, had sought to delay the outcomes due to issues over voting irregularities.

The pinnacle of the Malawi Electoral Fee (MEC), Jane Ansah, appealed for calm forward of the announcement.

What have been the outcomes?

The MEC say President Mutharika, who heads the Democratic Progressive Celebration (DPP), gained a slim victory by about 159,000 votes.

Mr Chakwera, from the Malawi Congress Celebration (MCP), got here shut behind with about 35.four% of the vote. He had additionally positioned as runner-up 5 years in the past.

President Mutharika’s deputy, Saulos Chilima, completed in third place – successful simply over 20% of the poll. He had earlier mentioned his identify was initially not on the electoral register when he turned as much as vote.

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Lazarus Chakwera (left) and Saulos Chilima (centre) have been difficult the president (proper)

With excessive ranges of nationwide poverty, the financial system and corruption have been key election points.

The vote was seen as one of the unpredictable the nation had seen.

Turnout was 74% among the many 6.8m residents who have been registered to vote.

Malawi has been impartial since 1964. This was the sixth presidential election held since single-party rule led to 1994.

Why was there a problem?

The Malawi Congress Celebration (MCP) sought a delay of the outcomes over allegations of vote-rigging.

They needed recounts in at the very least 10 of the nation’s 28 voting districts.

In some instances, there have been accusations that ballots had been bodily doctored with corrective fluid.

The injunction was initially granted on Saturday after the MEC obtained 147 reviews of irregularities.

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Greater than half of these registered to vote have been aged between 18 and 34

The tampering reviews induced some protests in opposition strongholds, Reuters reviews.

Vice President Chilima additionally alleged there had been “severe anomalies” in the course of the vote.

Regardless of issues, Malawi’s excessive courtroom lifted the injunction on Monday and allowed the outcomes to be launched – confirming the president’s slim victory.

Who’s President Mutharika?

President Mutharika, who has a background as a lawyer and professor, has been the nation’s chief since 2014.

He was educated within the UK and the US – and has been concerned in Malawian politics since 2008 when his brother, then president, appointed him as chief authorized adviser.

He was arrested in 2013 alongside different cupboard ministers accused of plotting to overthrow his brother’s successor.

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The president is now set for an additional five-year time period

Within the run-up to final week’s vote, President Mutharika’s age and well being had been a spotlight. Shortly earlier than the election he needed to deny a hearsay that he had died.

The opposition argued that high-level corruption has acquired worse underneath his presidency.

President Mutharika himself was sucked into an alleged bribery scandal, however denied any wrongdoing and was cleared by the nation’s anti-corruption watchdog.

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