Hakainde Hichilema, the president’s everlasting opponent

Zambia has a new president. Hakainde Hichilema, 59, married father of 3 children, must be invested head of state next Tuesday. The nickname HH or Bally, the longtime political opponent, was widely elected on August 12 with almost one million votes in advance and a strong turnout over incumbent President Edgard Lungu according to the election commission.

Hakainde Hichilema ran for president for the sixth time. The eternal opponent, finally elected, had so far lost in all polls for fifteen years. The businessman, long regarded by his opponents as an opportunist in politics, was catapulted into the head of the UPND party in 2006.

But HH presents itself today as “an ordinary citizen”. He was an eloquent speaker and during the campaign could get rid of his elitist image by changing his custom-made suits for tired or jeans.

CEO and investor Born in 1962 into a poor family in the south of the country, raised as “a simple boy who took care of the cattle”, he received a scholarship at the University of Zambia. He graduated in economics and business administration and then went to England for an MBA at the University of Birmingham.

At the age of 26, he was the CEO of the Zambian branch of an international accounting firm. He then invests in real estate, then in economics, breeding, health and tourism. He has served on the boards of several large Zambian companies.

Hakainde Hichilema, arrested fifteen times since entering politics, is now promising “change” in the country, beginning with the recovery of its economy. “People’s expectations are high,” said the newly elected president.

►Read also: Zambia: the new president Hakainde Hichilema is facing economic challenges


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