Malawi’s President Peter Mutharika and the electoral commission have lost a court challenge against the annulment of his re-election.
The Constitutional Court in Malawi rejected Mutharika’s appeal seeking to set aside last week’s judgment to nullify the May 2019 presidential election results.
The earlier ruling by the constitutional court cited several irregularities after the opposition challenged the election results.
A new vote was ordered to take place within 151 days, making this a land mark ruling related to elections in an African country.
Mutharika denounced the ruling as “a serious subversion of justice, an attack on our democratic systems and an attempt to undermine the will of the people”.
But the constitutional court dismissed the electoral commission’s claim that another election would be too expensive.
Judge Dingiswayo Madise said democracy was costly and the rights of citizens were paramount.
President Peter Mutharika last year was sworn in for a second five-year term, despite the challenge to election results in court.
He took his oath of office at an inauguration ceremony in Blantyre, Malawi’s second largest city, promising to tackle corruption.
But the May 2019 election was characterized by controversy with the opposition challenging the validity of the vote.
Mutharika was declared winner of the election with a 38.57% share of the vote.