, BLANTYRE, May 15 – Malawi\’s electoral commission Friday said the country will hold its local elections on November 23, after the vote was postponed repeatedly over the last decade.
"We are appealing to all stakeholders to start preparing for the elections to ensure timely implementation of its calendar," Anastazia Msosa, chairperson of the commission, told AFP.
The last local polls were held in 2000, six years after the introduction of multi-party politics in 1994. The next planned local elections in 2005 were called off due to a famine which affected half of the country\’s people.
Local elections were constitutionally required to be held by May 2010, but postponed because the cabinet first wanted to reform the local government system.
Local government minister Goodall Gondwe said the government first wanted to review the role of councillors and their relationship with national legislators, as well as review funding for local projects.
Only 14 percent of Malawi\’s four million voters cast ballots in the 2000 local elections.