Zambia: Opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema elected new President | Daily Current Affairs 2021

Zambia: Opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema elected new President

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Hakainde Hichilema

Zambia Election: Zambia’s opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema, on August 16, 2021, won the country’s presidential election with a landslide victory over incumbent President Edgar Lungu, stated the Electoral Commission of Zambia.

Key Details:

  • Zambia’s Electoral Commission reported that he got more than 2.8 million votes to President Edgar Lungu’s 1.8 million votes, achieving one of the biggest electoral wins in Zambia’s history.
  • This marks the third shift of power from a ruling party to the opposition since Zambia’s independence from Britain in 1964.
  • Hichilema will become Zambia’s seventh president since the reintroduction of multi-party democracy in 1991 by the founding president, the late Kenneth Kaunda, who had ruled the country as a one-party state for more than two decades.

About Hakainde Hichilema:

  • 59-Year-old Hakainde Hichilema was born into humble beginnings in the southern district of Monze.
  • He managed to get a scholarship to the University of Zambia, and later graduated with an MBA degree from the University of Birmingham in the UK.
  • He went on to become one of Zambia’s richest men, with business interests in finance, ranching, property, healthcare, and tourism.
  • He is also a member of the opposition party United Party for National Development in Zambia.
  • He was appointed as the party’s new president after the death of Anderson Mazoka in 2006.
  • Hichilema has been presented with the Africa Freedom Award by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom in October 2017.

Zambia financial Crisis:

  • Hakainde faces dire challenges in reviving the country’s democratic and economic landscape.
  • Zambia is in dire financial straights, and it became the continent’s first pandemic-era sovereign default in November after failing to keep up with its international debt payments.
  • Zambia’s economic debt is a major challenge.
  • Under Lungu’s leadership, Zambia’s debt jumped from 36 percent to 110 percent of GDP.
  • Among other issues are corruption, executive dominance, and increased violent extortionary by cadres under the Patriotic Front.

About Zambia:

  • Zambia, officially the Republic of Zambia is a landlocked country at the crossroads of Central, Southern, and East Africa.
  • Its neighbors are the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the north, Tanzania to the north-east, Malawi to the east, Mozambique to the southeast, Zimbabwe and Botswana to the south, Namibia to the southwest, and Angola to the west.
  • The capital city of Zambia is Lusaka, located in the south-central part of Zambia.
  • The currency used here is Zambian kwacha.

Note: Apart from its iconic Victoria Falls, the country has a lot of natural water resources compared to other southern African nations.

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