Lungu concedes defeat

by | Aug 16, 2021 | International | 0 comments

Hosia Mviringi

Zambian opposition leader Mr Hakainde Hichilema of the United Party for National Development (UPND) has won the August 12, 2021 Zambian elections by a landslide, comfortably dispatching thee incumbent Patriotic Front (PF) leader Edgar Lungu.

The opposition leader has finally landed the Southern African nation’s most coveted seat on a record sixth attempt.

The Electoral Commission of Zambia announced the national tally after results of 156 out of 157 constituencies were announced and tabulated.

“I therefore declare that the said Hichilema to be president of Zambia,” said electoral commission chairman, Esau Chulu, before a packed national results centre in the Zambian capital Lusaka.

Hichilema garnered 2,810,777 votes against second placed Lungu who managed a dismal 1,814,201 votes for a sitting President.

This puts a lid to an election which was rejected on Saturday by the outgoing President as not ‘free and fair’ following some skirmishes which saw a number of PF election agents being attacked while some Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) officials were arrested for attempting to tamper with the ballot.

Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu has accepted defeat and promised to uphold and respect the Constitution to ensure a peaceful transition.

In a televised address, Lungu says he will “comply with the constitutional provisions for a peaceful transfer of power.”

“I would therefore like to congratulate my brother, the president-elect, Mr Hakainde Hichilema.”

It is however yet to be seen what magic Mr Hichilema will play to turn around the economic fortunes of one of the world poorest economies.

The Zambian economy is over-reliant on copper which has suffered massive price downturns for the better part of the year, causing perennial headaches to economic planners.