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Defense chief wins Zambia presidential poll

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Zambia’s new President Edgar Lungu

Zambia's defense minister has won the country’s presidential elections on the ruling Patriotic Front party’s ticket amid the archrival’s allegation of voter fraud.

EdgarLungu was declared the country's new president on Saturday, winning a cutthroat race against opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema during the Tuesday polls.

Hichilema, who fell fewer than 28,000 votes shorter than Lungu, has cried foul, saying, "A stolen election does not reflect the will of the people and is not going to deliver." "It is with deep regret that we now already know the predetermined result."

The elections followed the unexpected demise of the former head of state, Michael Sata, who died on October 28 while undergoing medical treatment for an undisclosed disease at London’s King Edward VII Hospital.

The interim president, Guy Scott, was unable to run because his parents are Scottish and not Zambian. He had been the country's first white president since its independence from Britain in 1964.

Lungu will be sworn in on Sunday, becoming Zambia's sixth president since independence from Britain.

The country sports one of the world's largest supplies of copper. The majority of its 14 million people, however, live in abject poverty.

HN/NN/AS


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