The candidate from the ruling Patriotic Front, Edgar Lungu, has won Zambia’s presidential election called after President Michael Sata died in October, the acting chief justice announced on Saturday.
Lungu received 48.3% of the vote, while Hakainde Hichilema of the United Party for National Development came in second with 46.7%, Acting Chief Justice Lombe Chibesakunda said after votes were tallied from all 150 constituencies in the southern African nation.
Lungu, who heads Zambia’s justice and defence ministries, will serve out the remainder of Sata’s term until elections next year. Sata died after a long illness. Earlier Saturday, before the results were announced, Hichilema, the opposition leader, held a briefing in which he described the election as a sham.
“The election was stolen and does not reflect the will of the people,” he said. Zambia’s electoral commission chairperson Ireen Mambilima has dismissed the allegations, saying the process was transparent. Zambians voted on January 20, and the polls were extended by an extra day, due to heavy rain in certain areas.
During the election campaign, Lungu, who belongs to the same party as the late president, said he wants to complete economic development projects initiated by Sata. – Sapa-AP