Zambia Deports Top Zimbabwe Opponent Biti, Defying Court Order

Zambia Deports Top Zimbabwe Opponent Biti, Defying Court Order
(FILES) In this file photo taken on June 01, 2018 MDC Alliance Spokesperson Tendai Biti speaks during a press conference during which he announced that Zimbabwe’s opposition parties are calling for electoral reforms ahead of the July 30 general elections and that there will be street demonstrations in the capital Harare on June 5. Jekesai NJIKIZANA / AFP


Zambian authorities on Thursday defied a court order stopping them from deporting top Zimbabwe opposition figure Tendai Biti, handing him to police across the border, his lawyer said.

“They have defied the court order to allow him to seek asylum and as I am speaking to you right now he has been handed over to the Zimbabwean police,” lawyer Gilbert Phiri told AFP.

Biti, a veteran figure in the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), fled to Zambia on Wednesday claiming asylum, reportedly facing charges at home of inciting post-election violence.

Zambian authorities swiftly refused him asylum, but Phiri said Biti’s legal team had managed to challenge the decision, keeping Biti in Zambia.

But authorities have ignored the ruling and deported him, Phiri said.

He is on the Zimbabwe side,” he confirmed. “This is really embarrassing.”

A hearing at Zambia’s High Court, where Biti was supposed to appear, will go ahead Thursday in his absence, Phiri added.

The MDC were defeated in last week’s historic first elections since Zimbabwe’s military ousted Robert Mugabe in November, ending 37 years of iron-fisted rule.

Mugabe’s successor President Emmerson Mnangagwa was declared the winner on Friday by a narrow margin — results the opposition has furiously contested, alleging fraud.

Biti, an internationally-respected finance minister in Zimbabwe’s troubled 2009-2013 power-sharing government, had proclaimed a victory for the opposition before the results came in.

According to Zimbabwe’s state-run Chronicle newspaper, he is among nine suspects sought for inciting protests over alleged rigging which turned deadly.

The army opened fire with live ammunition on the opposition protesters, killing six people and prompting an international outcry.

The election has been marred by accusations of a crackdown on opponents, with arrests and beatings, as well as the deadly violence and rigging claims.


Zambia Appoint Belgian To Coach National Team

Zambia’s Belgian Coach, Sven Vandenbroeck, during his unveiling                                     Credit: CAF


Belgian Sven Vandenbroeck, the assistant coach of the Cameroon team that won the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations, has been named Zambia coach in succession to Wedson Nyirenda.

Former Zambia striker Nyirenda quit two months ago to take up a more lucrative post as coach of South African top-flight club Baroka.

A national football association official in Lusaka confirmed the appointment of Vandenbroeck, but gave no details regarding the length or value of the contract.

Vandenbroeck and head coach and fellow Belgian Hugo Broos were fired after Cameroon fared poorly at the Confederation Cup last year and failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

His first competitive challenge with Zambia comes in September when the “Chipolopolo” (Copper Bullets) visit Namibia for a 2019 Cup of Nations matchday 2 qualifier.

This match will place huge pressure on Vandenbroeck as Zambia made a disastrous start in the four-team group, losing at home against Mozambique.

Guinea-Bissau complete Group K and the winners and runners-up after six matches qualify for the 2019 tournament in Cameroon.

Vandenbroeck assisted Broos when long shots Cameroon were crowned African champions last year, coming from behind in the final to beat Egypt 2-1 in Gabon.

The tall, sandy-haired 38-year-old has been tasked with not only taking Zambia to the next Cup of Nations, but also to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Zambia, the shock 2012 Cup of Nations winners, are currently ranked 16 in Africa and 76 in the world.


Lungu’s Critic Denies Crimes In Zambia

lungu, zambian economy, agriculture,
Zambian President, Edgar Lungu


A former Zambian minister and a leading critic of President Edgar Lungu appeared in court on Wednesday to deny charges that he had profited from the proceeds of crime. 

Chishimba Kambwili has emerged as one of the most prominent voices speaking out against Lungu, who is accused of an increasingly authoritarian rule and of cracking down on dissent.

Lungu had been due to face an opposition motion of impeachment in parliament on Wednesday but the process was delayed by officials who claimed more time was needed to consider the process.

Kambwili, who has been in the hospital for an undisclosed condition since his arrest on Thursday, appeared in court under heavy police guard.

“I understand the charge and plead not guilty,” Kambwili told magistrate Mwaka Mikalile after she read the 34 counts faced by the dissident lawmaker from the governing Patriotic Front party who previously served as foreign minister and Lungu’s information minister.

He has since fallen out with Lungu and repeatedly accused the president and government of being corrupt.

Lungu has denied accusations that he is creating a dictatorship in Zambia and has accused rivals of trying to overturn the 2016 election result.

Kambwili was ordered to return to court on June 4 for trial and was released on $1,000 (800 euros) bail.

Several opposition leaders were in court to support Kambwili.

After the hearing, opposition UPND party leader Hakainde Hichilema — another fierce critic of Lungu — accused the president of intimidating his opponents.

“This is not how you should run the country. They think running the country is to brutalise some people. A dictator has no true friend other than his wife and family,” he said.

Lungu had been due to face a motion of impeachment on Wednesday tabled by opposition parties in parliament — but the National Assembly said in a letter that the hearing would be delayed, prompting anger from Lungu’s critics.

“This appears to be a delaying tactic and we suspect the executive is interfering with the work of parliament,” UPND spokesman Charles Kakoma told AFP.


Zambia Deploys Army To Battle Cholera After 41 Deaths

Zambia’s president Edgar Lungu has deployed the army to help combat a cholera outbreak that has claimed 41 lives in the capital Lusaka and affected 1,550 more since September.

The initial outbreak began on September 28 according to the World Health Organization and Zambia’s health ministry subsequently launched efforts to limit the spread of the disease.

Cholera is a water-borne disease which goes hand in hand with poverty and while readily treatable can be lethal if unaddressed.

“I have directed all the three wings of the Defence Force to join the Ministry of Health… to escalate efforts to minimise the spread of cholera in our capital city and the rest of the country,” Lungu wrote on his official, verified Facebook page late Friday.

“Lusaka has been recording an average of 60 new cases every day. I’ve noted with great sadness that a total of 41 people have died of the disease since its outbreak.

“The outbreak was initially linked to contaminated water from shallow wells and unsanitary conditions in the residential and public areas affected. But we now note that the spread of cholera is being propagated through contaminated food.”

Lungu added that there would be a crackdown on street food stalls, bars and restaurants that do not meet minimum food hygiene standards.

“I am deeply concerned at the rampaging advance of the outbreak,” he said.


Elephant In Zambia Trample Tourists While Taking Pictures

File photo of a one-day old baby Asiatic elephant walking next to his mother Angele, of La Palmyre’s zoo in France, and his four-year old sister Asha (L) during his first open-air. ATTILA KISBENEDEK / AFP

A Dutch and a Belgian tourist were trampled to death by an elephant in Zambia as they got too close to the animal when trying to take pictures, police said on Sunday.

The holidaymakers, whose identities have not been released, were killed on Saturday while on Safari at Maramba River Lodge in the tourist town of Livingstone.

“A lady from Belgium aged 57 and a 64-year-old man from the Netherlands were killed as they went close to the elephant trying to take photographs,” police spokesman Danny Mwale said in a statement.

Mwale said police who visited the scene found the bodies lying on the ground with multiple injuries.

Cases of tourists killed by wild animals while on safari are often reported across southern Africa.

Some people have been mauled by lions while attempting to take pictures.


Nigeria Recall Arsenal’s Iwobi For Zambia Tie

Kelechi Iheanacho, Arsenal, Alex Iwobi, Arsene Wenger
Alex Iwobi

Nigeria on Tuesday recalled Arsenal forward Alex Iwobi for next month’s crucial 2018 World Cup qualifier against their main rivals Zambia.

The 21-year-old was ruled out of the double-header against Cameroon earlier this month with a thigh strain, but should be fit for the next game in Uyo on October 7.

The Super Eagles top Group B with 10 points and with Zambia on seven and just two rounds of matches to go a win for Nigeria puts them in the finals in Russia.

Also in the group but already out of contention are African champions Cameroon in third with just three while Algeria prop up the table with one point.

Forward Ahmed Musa, who has yet to feature for Leicester City this season, was a surprise call-up after coach Gernot Rohr said his selection was based on current form and match time.

Rohr dropped goalkeeper Dele Alampasu, who has not played for his Portuguese club, Cesarense.

Nigeria squad to play Zambia in Uyo, southern Nigeria, on October 7:

Goalkeepers: Daniel Akpeyi (Chippa United/RSA), Ikechukwu Ezenwa (FC Ifeanyi Ubah), Ayodele Ajiboye (Plateau United)

Defenders: William Ekong (Bursaspor/TUR), Abdullahi Shehu (Anorthosis Famagusta/CYP), Leon Balogun (Mainz 05/GER), Elderson Echiejile (Sivasspor FC/TUR), Uche Agbo (Standard Liege/BEL), Chidozie Awaziem (Nantes/FRA), Olaoluwa Aina (Hull City/ENG)

Midfielders: John Mikel Obi (Tianjin Teda/CHN), Ogenyi Onazi (Trabzonspor FC/TUR), Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City/ENG), Oghenekaro Etebo (CD Feirense/POR), John Ogu (Hapoel Be’er Sheva/ISR), Mikel Agu (Bursaspor/TUR)

Forwards: Ahmed Musa, Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City/ENG), Moses Simon (KAA Gent/BEL), Alex Iwobi (Arsenal FC/ENG), Odion Ighalo (Chang Chun-Yatai/CHN), Victor Moses (Chelsea/ENG), Anthony Nwakaeme (Hapoel Be’er Sheva/ISR)


Zambian Opposition Leader Says Arrest Was Political

Zambian opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema waving to his supporters after being released from prison after treason charge against hime were dropped in Lusaka.  Image: DAWOOD SALIM / AFP

Zambia’s main opposition leader on Thursday condemned his four-month imprisonment for alleged treason as an abuse of the criminal justice system by his political opponents.

Hakainde Hichilema was released from custody two weeks ago after being detained for allegedly failing to give way to President Edgar Lungu’s motorcade.

“It is not because the police have done an investigation, it is because a member of the ruling party has instigated the police to arrest this citizen,” Hichilema said.

“You cannot have a criminal justice system that operates like that.”

The charges were widely seen as part of a crackdown on dissent by Lungu’s Patriotic Front government.

Hichilema, leader of the United Party for National Development (UPND), was speaking at a joint press conference in Cape Town with South African opposition leader Mmusi Maimane.

Hichilema said he was “surprised” by his release as he was looking forward to being acquitted by the courts.

He was freed on August 16, when all charges were dropped hours before the start of his trial.

Hichilema, who narrowly lost last year’s election and refuses to recognise Lungu as president, recounted details of his “brutal” arrest in April.

He said that more than “200 policemen, heavily armed with machine-guns” and assisted by German shepherd dogs surrounded his house and “poison-gassed” him, his wife and children for 10 hours.

Maimane, head of the Democratic Alliance party, was in May barred from entering Zambia after he landed in Lusaka airport to attend one of Hichilema’s pre-trial court hearings.


South African Opposition Leader Barred From Entering Zambia

South African opposition leader Mmusi Maimane said Zambian immigration officials barred him from entering their country, stopping his visit to detained opposition leader Hakainde Hichelema, popularly known as HH.

Speaking to journalists outside the Zambian High Commission in Pretoria on Friday, Maimane of South Africa’s Democratic Alliance (DA) said officials boarded his plane after it landed in Lusaka late on Thursday, assaulted him and forced him to return home.

“They said I could not come in. They started to assault me and push me down, while they wanted to make sure other passengers could then at that point leave the plane. It was then, subsequent to that they simply said that they are not obliged to give me any reason – they will not satisfy themselves until I’m put back on the plane,” said Maimane.

The DA leader said he was planning to visit Hichilema, the leader of Zambia’s United Party for National Development (UPND), who was arrested in April and charged with trying to overthrow the government.

A Zambian court on Friday allowed Hichilema to challenge the prosecution from moving his treason case to the high court for trial, in a case that has stoked political tension months after contested elections.

“All I simply wanted was to arrive to stand side-by-side with a friend, a fellow comrade, somebody who stands for the rule of law in Zambia. HH who has been detained in Zambia and charged with treason. A charge that could end up in capital punishment for absolutely no reason” said Maimane.

Supporters of President Edgar Lungu gathered outside the High Commission to show support for Zambian authorities and the move to stop Maimane and for the case against Hichilema.

Across the street, supporters of Maimane and Hichilema chanted “Free HH”, and accused Lungu’s government of corruption and going against the rule of law.

Professor Shadrack Gutto, from the University of South Africa, said the way Maimane was handled was the main issue of concern.

“The idea I think, what should worry us at this point, is not so much the hostility between the political parties in Zambia, but how Mmusi Maimane, a leader of opposition party in South Africa was treated.

“It is the treatment which is more worrying because he was harassed by the security forces. His mobile phones were taken and so on… and I think they went too far than not simply saying, ‘we will not allow you entry as an immigration policy that we have’,” he said.

Zambia was seen as one of southern Africa’s most stable countries until relations soured between the government and opposition in August when President Lungu’s Patriotic Front (PF) party beat the UPND in elections marred by violence.

The opposition says the vote was rigged but Hichilema has so far failed in his legal challenge against the result.

They also say the charges against him are politically motivated.

Chinese Firm Seeks To Establish Headquaters In Calabar

chinees-investor-with-ayadeA Chinese firm, China Jiangxi Corporation for International Economic and Technical Cooperation (CJIC), has announced its plans to locate its Nigerian headquarters to Calabar, the Cross River state capital.

The Deputy Chairman of the firm, Changqing Cao, disclosed this when he led his team on a courtesy visit to Governor Benedict Ayade, at his office.

Mr Cao disclosed that the company ranks 250 among notable international contractors as presented by the United States Engineering News records.

He said the choice of Calabar was suitable as it shares similar topographical features with the Jiangxi province of China.

The Deputy Chairman, stated that the company has 20 branches, 18 in Africa including Kenya, Zambia, Namibia, Ethiopia, among others.

He said the company is currently building an airport in Zambia and a university hospital in Kenya.

Explaining that the firm has interest in the construction of the superhighway, Mr Cao said if approved by the Governor, its road construction engineers will be deployed to the state for commencement of feasibility studies.

“The firm also seeks to embark on social housing, as Nigeria with a huge population is faced with accommodation challenges which must be tackled to boost the economy so that it would impact positively on the citizenry”, Cao said.

On his part, Governor Ayade expressed hope that having established strong footing in various West African countries, he was confident that the firm would replicate same experience in Cross River.

“Make haste, as right now, we are under pressure from other companies, but as a state, we have not committed to any specific company in paper and in writing for the superhighway. It is open and virgin, you can come in as soon as you can,” the governor said.

He, further added that the choice of Calabar was appropriate, stating a list of benefits to be enjoyed by the Jiangxi Corporation.

According to him, the over 21,000 sq km land bounded by the Atlantic Ocean, the proposed Bakassi deep seaport which would aid in the evacuation of goods while providing a link to other West Africa countries, were among the benefits if the company fully partnered with the state and established its headquarters therein.

Algeria To Name Squad For Nigeria On November 1

Algerian Football Federation, Nigeria, Desert Foxes, AlgeriaThe Algerian Football Federation says the list of players invited for the 2018 World Cup qualifier match against Nigeria will be revealed on Tuesday, November 1.

The football federation says new manager, Georges Leekens, would unveil his plans for the Desert Foxes after the roster is announced.

Reports say regular team members such as Riyad Mahrez, Islam Slimani, Yacine Brahimi, Sofiane Feghouli and Adlene Guedioura are in the squad.

They added that Adam Ounas who was recently cleared by FIFA was also listed.

The Foxes are expected to arrive in Nigeria on November 9 for the game scheduled for November 12 at the ‘Nest of Champions’ in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital.

Leekens took over as the Desert Foxes’ coach after the Algerian football governing body sacked Milovan Rajevac.

Rajevac was relieved of his duties on Tuesday, October 11, following the team’s 1-1 draw against Cameroon.


Algeria Sack Coach Milovan Rajevac

Milovan RajevacThe Algeria Football Federation has sacked the Head Coach of the country’s national football team, Milovan Rajevac.

Rajevac was relieved of his duties on Tuesday following the team’s 1-1 draw against Cameroun on Sunday.

Assistant coaches Nabil Neghiz and Yazid Mansouri are expected to take charge of the team on an interim basis until a successor is appointed.

Algeria reached the last 16 of the 2014 World Cup but now sit at the bottom of their Russia 2018 qualifying group which has Nigeria, Cameroon and Zambia.

The situation appears difficult as only the group winners qualify for the finals.

Milovan Rajevac has been in charge for a little over three months.