A National Conference on Electoral Reforms took place in Lilongwe from 11th to 12th December 2014 to initiate a movement for electoral reform in Malawi; debate advantages and disadvantages of various electoral systems and practices; discuss recommendations from issues papers presented at the conference; formulate a national technical working group on electoral reforms and to establish an Expert Reference Group.
Participants to the conference were drawn from Malawi Electoral Commission, Government ministries and parastatals, Civil Society, political parties, the Media, Security Agents, international development partners, Academia and Traditional Leaders.
With funding from the Netherlands Institute of Democracy (NIMD), CMD held a board induction on interparty dialogue and its role in a multiparty democracy at Sun and Sand Hotel, 8th December 2014.
The event drew the participation of Political Parties namely DPP, PP, PPM, MCP, AFORD, UDF and NASAF. Attending the event, were also two delegates from Ghana, Ahmed Ramadhan the National Chairperson for Peoples National Convection and Peter Mac Manu, former chair for New Patriotic Party invited to share their experiences to the participants.
“A lot of women are quite hesitant to join politics because of all the names people associate with women politicians. You have to be headstrong and persistent as a woman if you want to make it in politics in this country”
These sentiments were shared by Agness Nkusa-Nkhoma, of People’s Party during the orientation of mentors training that took place at Bridge Hotel in Lilongwe.
The trainings, which were conducted in the 4 regional cells was part of the of the DIPD women in Politics Project was part of the activities aimed at increasing the participation of Women in political party leadership structures and decision making processes.
Centre for Multiparty Democracy – Malawi (CMD – M) on February 13 signed a US$1,200 ‘Strengthening Political Parties Project Support Document’ with the British Department for International Development (DFID) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
The project’s main aim is to empower political parties to effectively participate in Malawi’s multi-party democracy, by among other things, assisting political parties to have clear policy orientation.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, DFID Country Representative Sara Sanyahumbi said the project her organisation was bankrolling alongside UNDP was in response to a recent CMD – M-commissioned study that showed that almost all political parties in Malawi were deficient in all major capacity areas.