Vice President Saulos Chilima will on Monday leave for Zambia to attend the swearing in ceremony of President elect Edgar Lungu, after bveing delegated by President Peter Mutharika.
A statement issued by the VP’s press officer Pilirani Phiri says Dr. Chilima will leave on Monday morning and return on Wednesday.
“The Vice President has been delegated by His Excellency Prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika to attend the ceremony at National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka on Tuesday 13th September, ” reads the statement in part.
The swearing in of President Edgar Lungu delayed despite concluding the elections three weeks ago following court proceedings after the opposition claimed fraud and irregularities.
The petition by the opposition was however thrown out to mark celebrations from Lungu supporters.
Zambia’s High Court declined to block the inauguration of President Edgar Lungu, in a further legal setback for opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema’s push to have his petition against the outcome of an Aug. 11 election he claims was “stolen” be heard by the courts.
Hichilema, 54, applied to dismiss a Sept. 5 Constitutional Court decision to drop his challenge against Lungu’s victory. The president of the United Party for National Development rejected the outcome of the vote and said he doesn’t recognize Lungu, 59, as president, urging his supporters to “fight to restore your democracy.”
Lungu, who was due to be sworn-in on Sept. 13, won 50.4 percent of the vote against Hichilema’s 47.6 percent, enough to avoid a run-off, according to the Electoral Commission of Zambia. Hichilema accused Lungu’s ruling Patriotic Front of colluding with the commission to manipulate the results, a claim they both denied.