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Malawi State Official Says Mutharika Has Conceded Defeat, Moved Out of Presidential Palace


President Peter Mutharika gets instructions on how to vote from a presidisng officer, in Thyolo district. (Lameck Masina/VOA)

Incumbent Malawian president Peter Mutharika has conceded defeat to opposition leader Lazarus Chakwera of the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) in the just-ended presidential election re-run and has already vacated the nation’s official residence, amid widespread celebrations in the southern African nation, according to an official of the Ministry of Information and Civic Education.

Unofficial results of the presidential election indicate that the MCP and its partners amassed more than 60% of the total votes cast and Mutharika’s Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) got at least 38%.

Speaking on VOA Zimbabwe Service’s call-in program, Livetalk, on Friday, Janet Dambula said the Malawi Electoral Commission is expected to announce the results of the presidential election re-run Saturday.

“Right now we are all anxiously waiting for the Electoral Commission to give us the results. According to unofficial results, the Tonse Alliance is the party which made it … At the moment unofficial figures indicate that they have about 61.26% of the total votes while the DPP/UDF Alliance has about 38.1%. At the moment there is total excitement in the country.

“As you know, many people were oppressed and they were tired of the oppression they had gone through, they complained about the tribalism and also complained about nepotism. The cost of living was just too high.”

She said Mutharika had become unpopular in Malawi.

“At the end of the last two months the president became so arrogant and started fighting some arms of government like the judiciary, the civil service. So, people were not happy.” She dismissed reports that Mutharika would reject the results of the poll, citing alleged electoral fraud and violence.

Officials of the Malawi Electoral Commission were not available for comment as they were said to be tallying the votes at the nation’s command center.

Dambula said Malawi has shown the world that it is “truly a democratic country.”

Little-known Peter Kuwani of the opposition Mbakuwaku Movement for Democracy also contested the poll while Saulos Chilima, Mutharika’s vice, is Chakwera’s running mate.

The Tonse Alliance comprises 10 political parties, including Chilima’s United Transformational Movement, and former president Joice Banda’s People’s Party.

Incumbent Malawi President Concedes Defeat in Presidential Election Re-Run
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