Birmingham professor rates Malawi’s election highly

A professor of democracy at Birmingham University in Britain has described Malawi’s fresh presidential election as record breaking and an inspiration to many countries.

Professor Nic Cheeseman told the BBC recently that Malawi has become the only country in the world where an election was annulled and the opposition emerged victors.

He highlighted several factors that have contributed to the success of the election including civil society activism which led to extensive demonstrations.

“The most important thing that we have seen is that there have been really high levels of popular engagement around the election, really great civil society activism that has put pressure on Malawi’s political institutions to operate more democratically,” Cheeseman said.

“We also then had a new head of the electoral commission and I think many of us worried that it was going to be a very difficult job because he only came into the job literally a few weeks ago and that seemed like a really short time to deliver a good quality election but his hard work and ingenuity and strong leadership appears to have solved some of the challenges in the 2019 election and allowed a much more credible process.”

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