Malawi's president to appeal court ruling nullifying vote

A spokesman says Malawi's president has instructed his lawyers to appeal the court ruling that nullified last year's presidential election and ordered a new vote

BLANTYRE, Malawi -- Malawi's president has instructed his lawyers to appeal the court ruling that nullified last year's presidential election and ordered a new vote, his spokesman said Wednesday.

Monday's ruling was just the second time in Africa that a court had nullified a presidential election, after Kenya in 2017. The fresh vote must occur within 150 days.

The court in Malawi cited widespread and systematic irregularities including liberal use of correction fluid to change results.

The spokesman for President Peter Mutharika, Mgeme Kalilani, told The Associated Press they believe the court's decision is a “serious miscarriage of justice and attempt to circumvent democracy and the will of the people.”

It is not clear when the president's team will file the appeal.

Kalilani said the president made the decision after members of his legal team went to the state house to brief him on the ruling. “They analysed the ruling together," the spokesman said.