The success of Malawi’s democratic dispensation will be measured on the extent to which it delivers public goods – opportunities, development, accountability – for the people.
By pushing their usually valid complaints onto the streets and the courts, opposition leaders deny governments the popular goodwill and international credibility they need to govern effectively.
A new round of elections offers an opportunity to strengthen civil and political freedoms.
Will the same electoral commission, so heavily criticised in the court’s ruling, improve its capacity and arrange more credible elections?
It’s an achievement in itself that Malawi is holding its sixth multi-party national elections since its transition from dictatorship under former President Kamuzu Banda.