President Joyce Banda has appointed 10 people to be commissioners of the Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec).

The 10, who were announced on state-controlled Malawi Broadcasting Corporation Television on Saturday, join chairperson Justice Anastanzia Msosa.

Nancy Tembo: Among the chosen commissioners

The new commissioners, whose appointment was with effect from Saturday, are Malawi Congress Party (MCP) spokesperson Nancy Tembo, ruling People’s Party (PP) officials in director of elections Reverend Emmanuel Chimkwita Phiri and director of social services Gloria Chingota, former Maravi Peoples Party (MPP) director of youth Stanley Biliati and former United Democratic Front (UDF) member of Parliament for Mulanje Bale Elvey Mtafu.

Others are members of the clergy. They are Reverend Allan Chiphiko of Nkhoma Synod of CCAP, Archbishop emeritus Bernard Malango of Anglican Church and Reverend Mezuwa Banda of the Livingstonia Synod of the CCAP.

Other members are Bertha Simwaka and Wellington Nakanga.

Contracts of five former Mec commissioners — Ron Nkomba, Brown Chimphamba, Georgina Chikoko, Mary Manyusa and Dick Mzumara — expired in January, leaving Msosa as the only commissioner.

Commissioner Oliver Mwenifumbo died last year, while Jean Nankwenya was sent on a diplomatic mission in the Unites States of America.

Presidential and Parliamentary Elections are scheduled for May 2014. A bill to regularise the holding of these elections together with Local Government Elections is still in parliament to be concluded. Preparations for such elections normally happen a year earlier. This means next year serious preparations for the anticipated tripartite elections are expected to start.

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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