Get Elected

Learn more about how you can be elected as Councillor, Member of Parliament and President

GUIDE TO BECOMING COUNCILLOR, MP OR PRESIDENT

Represent your community and fight for the change you want to see. Become a Member of Parliament! Believe in yourself, get support and go for it! 50:50 Campaign is here to help.

SELECT A PARTY

Malawi is a multi-party democracy and it is mostly necessary to join an established political party in order to become a candidate for election. However, if you do not get acceptance to compete on a party ticket or choose to, there is a provision to stand as an independent candidate.

Before joining any Political Party, make sure you are convinced that their values match your aspirations. You can get this reflection by reading their Manifestos for the 2014 elections.

JOIN A PARTY OR BE AN INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE

Once you have chosen a political party you will be expected to join as a member, before applying to be a candidate to compete in the primaries.
Joining a political party should give you access to campaigning opportunities, party conference and the opportunity to shape the party’s policies and elect its administration.

GET TRAINING AND SUPPORT

Each political party should offer the chance to apply for candidate training, as well as online resources to guide potential candidates through the 50:50 Campaign Incubator Training series. These trainings will help you gain the skills, experience and confidence to become a candidate.

On the 50:50 Campaign Links page you will find contact details for party representatives, party-specific support organizations, and cross-party initiatives.

CAMPAIGN

You need to campaign. Campaign period is scheduled for a short period but initiatives to convince electorates need to start early.

You should also register for the 50:50 Campaign mailing list and we will keep you posted on campaign training and strategy, coaching opportunities for women candidates across the country, and more.

BECOME A CANDIDATE

So, now you are ready to stand. First thing you should do is check that you meet the minimum legal criteria:

He/she is a citizen of the Republic who at the time of nomination has attained the age of twenty-one years;
He/she is able to speak and to read the English language well enough to take an active part in the proceedings of Parliament; and
He/she is registered as a voter in a constituency.
More information is available via the Electoral Commission website.
You will need to be approved by your chosen party, or establish it that you will stand as an independent candidate.

You will likely need references to prove your professional and personal capabilities and to highlight specific skills and qualifications that you have. However, the great thing about applying to become a Councilor, MP and President in Malawi is that there is no expected career path beforehand and all life experience is deemed relevant.

GO BE THE LEADER!

Once you are selected as a candidate, you will begin your election campaign. You will get lots of support from your local party. As a candidate, you will be expected to lend your support and time to fundraising initiatives for your party and campaign.

Specifically for those standing as Independent Candidate, you will need to fundraise through your team and leverage partner support to boost your campaign. It is imperative to have a team and outstanding strategy to support campaign.

Want to Stand?

Do you want to stand as Councilor, MP or as President? If you think that you might like to stand let 50:50 Campaign Malawi help! The 50:50 Campaign will support you on the way to 2019 tripartite elections. Give us your details by clicking on the button below, register and we will feedback with the plan, and way forward.

Register Now

GOVERNMENT COMMITMENT

  • Commitment shown by ensuring that women are in leadership and decision making in public institutions.
  • Adopting international charters and protocols that promote gender equality.
  • Domesticated in various legal instruments, Constitution and various acts.
  • Section 24 of the Constitution (Amended in 2010) No discrimination on the basis of gender.
  • Section 11(1) of the Gender Equality Act-GEA (2013) provision for a quota of 40 to 60 percent representation of either sex in the public service as far as recruitment and appointments are concerned.

CHALLENGES WITH GATE KEEPERS

  • Research shows that the current party system does not favour the election of women.
  • High number of independent candidates who participated in the 2014 elections.
  • Few women hold high  leadership positions within political parties

CHALLENGES FOR WOMEN TO JOIN POLITICS

Party Choice

Choosing a party in which to contest for leadership position, in light of competition within the party, the popularity of the party and ideological principles.

Violence

Violence, intimidation, hatred, character assassination which many women cannot deal with. This is done by contestants who are insecure or those that want to scare women off the political playing field.

Culture

Discouragement by those within the party or society around, due to deeply entrenched cultural beliefs.

Lack of Political Will

Lack of political will on the part of party leadership to introduce and implement policies that promote participation of women in political leadership positions.

CHALLENGES WITH SYSTEMS AT GRASSROOTS LEVEL

  • Female aspirants have to contend with the selectors’ stereotypes and sexist assumptions about the attributes of an ‘electable’ candidate
  • Any attempt by a political party to increase the number of women MPs has to mean selecting them for ‘safe’ or winnable seats.
  • However, this inevitably means throwing out sitting male MPs.
  • The establishment of a new party seems to provide opportunities for women because the problem of de-selecting sitting MPs does not arise.

Personalisation and access to resources

  • The personalized nature of the system and the extent to which it hinges on access to resources to run individual campaigns for both primary and actual elections militate against the participation of women.
  • Hand-outs (male candidates easily affords)

Supporting & voting for women begins with us all

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