Judiciary Committee on Elections inducted

Members of JCE pose for a photograph with Chief Justice Mzikamanda SC (seated middle), officials from Electoral Commission and facilitators of the Induction

Some judicial officers from the Malawi Judiciary, officers from the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) visited Kenya in the year 2023 for benchmarking purposes on electoral dispute resolution mechanisms. The visit was made specifically to the Kenyan Judiciary and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) of Kenya.

As one of the best practices learnt from the benchmarking visit, the Honourable Chief Justice Rizine R. Mzikamanda, SC constituted a Judiciary Committee on Elections (JCE) for Malawi Judiciary. The mandate of the Committee is to advise and recommend to the Chief Justice legislative reforms and administrative mechanisms as well as measures for efficient and effective disposal of election-related disputes.

In order to enhance capacity of the members of the newly constituted JCE, an induction course was organized for the Committee. The induction took place in Lilongwe from 18th to 19th April 2024. It was officially opened by Chief Justice Mzikamanda. Chief Justice Mzikamanda, SC explained that JCE was critical to ensuring that the Malawi Judiciary is equipped and organized to independently, fairly, effectively and efficiently handle electoral disputes.

The facilitators of the induction were Honourable Justice David Musinga, President of the Court of Appeal and Vice Chairperson of Judiciary Committee on Elections and Honourable Elizabeth Tanui, Registrar, both from the Judiciary of Kenya; and Mr. Chrispine Owiye, Director of Legal Services for IEBC of Kenya.

Participants to the induction were orientated on development and strategic implementation of Terms of Reference for an effective Judiciary Committee on Elections; Registry and Case Management; Legal Framework Governing Pre-Election Dispute Resolution Mechanism; and Management of Election Disputes and Electoral Offences from the Election Management Bodies’ and Legal Practitioners’ perspective.

In attendance were Her Excellency Madam Fenella Frost, UNDP Resident Representative and Honourable Dr. Kachale, Chairperson of MEC and senior officers from both UNDP and MEC.

The induction was organized by the Malawi Judiciary Training Committee in collaboration with MEC with funding from UNDP.

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