Zambia’s Lungu close to poll victory
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Lusaka - Patriotic Front candidate Edgar Lungu is close to victory in Zambia's presidential election with a slender margin of 25 000 against his closest rival Hakainde Hichilema.
Results from 121 constituencies so far counted by the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) have given Lungu 701,089 votes (48.72
percent of the total votes counted).
Hichilema of the United Party for National Development (UPND) has 674,185 votes (46.85 percent), a Sapa correspondent reported on Friday.
Zambians voted for the sixth president on January 20, following the death of Michael Sata in October 2014.
With results of 29 constituencies out of 150 still outstanding, Lungu could become the sixth president of the copper-rich southern African nation since independence from Britain in 1964.
The release of results on January 23 was suspended after Hichilema complained that the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation was showing wrong figures.
The ECZ had contracted the ZNBC to transmit results live. Unrest broke out in north-western Zambia when opposition supporters saw wrong results from the national broadcaster.
When the process resumed in the afternoon ECZ chairwoman Justice Ireen Mambilima warned that anyone identified with manipulation of broadcast results would be arrested.
Final results are expected on Saturday.
In the third position is the only female candidate, Edith Nawakwi, who polled 11 770 votes (0.82 percent).
Nevers Mumba, candidate for former ruling party, the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy, received 10 737 votes (0.75 percent).