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Zambia

Yearbook 2015

2015 ZambiaZambia. In January, presidential elections were arranged in which the replacement of the deceased Michael Sata in October would be appointed. The election was preceded by power struggles and internal strife within the ruling party Patriotic Front (PF). Edgar Lungu, the party's secretary general and the country's Justice and Defense Minister, had the backing of one phalanx, and Sata's nephew Miles Sampa by another. The latter also had Guy Scott, the vice president who stepped in as interim president after Sata's death, on his side. In the end, a ruling was required in the Supreme Court before it became clear that Lungu would be the party's presidential candidate.

2015 Zambia

According to COUNTRYAAH, the election itself became a very even fight between Lungu and Hakainde Hichilema, who was running for Parliament's largest opposition party, the United National Development Party (UPND). The former received 48% of the vote against 47% for Hichilema, a difference corresponding to just under 28,000 votes. The turnout was very low; only 32% of voters participated. Lungu took office at the end of January and will hold office until the regular presidential elections are held in September 2016. He also held the post of Minister of Defense, but in August appointed Richwell Siamunene from UPND as his successor in this position. Already in March, Lungu fired Vice President Guy Scott and appointed Inonge Wina, who became the first woman in the post. The same month, Ireen Mambilima was appointed chairman of the Supreme Court.

In March, fears were raised that Lungu, like Sata, would be sick. The head of state collapsed during a political meeting in Lusaka. It turned out that he was suffering from akalasi, a condition that makes it more difficult for food to pass through the lower part of the esophagus. Lungu was operated the same month in South Africa.

In June, Rupiah Banda, President 2008-11, was released from charges of bribery in connection with an oil deal with Nigeria. That same month, Zambia, along with 26 other countries, signed the Tripartite Free Trade Area Free Trade Agreement. However, the agreement must be approved by the parliaments of the countries before it can enter into force. The agreement covers countries from Egypt in the north to South Africa in the south.

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