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Zambia: President Edgar Lungu Elected In Disputed Vote

Zambia's incumbent President Edgar Lungu has defeated his main rival Hakainde Hichilema, the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) has said, in a closely fought presidential election marred by allegations of fraud.
Lungu, leader of the Patriotic Front (PF), won 50.35 percent of the vote against 47.67 percent for Hichilema of the United Party for National Development (UPND), the commission said on Monday. The opposition party quickly rejected the result, claiming the electoral commission had colluded to rig the vote against its candidate.
"We have evidence to the effect that the votes for Hakainde Hichilema have been deliberately reduced in collusion with the Electoral Commission of Zambia," the UPND's lawyer Jack Mwiimbu told journalists, according to the Reuters news agency.
"We have confidence that the constitutional court will rise above board and declare the results a nullity," he said.
Police said officers were sent to quell rioting by Hichilema's supporters in the south of the country who blocked roads and burned tyres after the result was announced.
Southern province police commissioner Goldwin Phiri reported clashes with police in the towns of Monze, 
Chombe and Mazabuka. 

"We don't know where we are headed, but ... there will be trouble," a civil servant in Mazabuka told DPA news agency.  Al Jazeera's Tania Page, reporting from the capital Lusaka, said Hichilema "has really been able to cast a lot of doubt over the process", raising many complaints about the campaign period and vote counting process.
"Some of that has been supported by international observer missions," Page said. "Most particularly, the European Union, which agreed with his claims that the state media is heavily biased towards the government."
The EU also supported Hichilema's view that police had acted with political motives at times, and had also cracked down "quite harshly" on some of his political gatherings, our correspondent said. The election was fought around the issues of rising unemployment, mine closures, power shortages and soaring food prices which Hichilema, an economist and businessman, blamed on Lungu's mismanagement.
Lungu has been in office for just 19 months after he first took power last year when he beat Hichilema by less than 28,000 votes in a snap election following the death in office of president Michael Sata. 
His re-election will see him remain in power for another five-year term.
Hundreds of Lungu's supporters, most of them young men draped in PF regalia, took to the streets of Lusaka, chanting slogans and singing, while drivers hooted their car horns in celebration.
Emanuel Phiri, 48, a taxi driver, said he believed Lungu was the popular choice of the Zambian people.  "Lungu really worked hard for this and God has made it possible," he told Al Jazeera. The opposition, however, has launched a challenge to the result and will appear in court later in the week, Al Jazeera's Page said.

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