Zambia: Former president Rupiah Banda dies at 85

3 months ago 378

 Former president Rupiah Banda dies at 85

Ex-Zambian president Rupiah Banda   -  

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ALEXANDER JOE/AFP or licensors

Last updated: 27 minutes ago

Zambia

Zambia’s former president Rupiah Banda has died at the age of 85 after a long battle with colon cancer. His son Andrew Banda announced the former leader's death on Friday.

“He is gone”, Andrew told an AFP correspondent in Lusaka.

Rupiah Banda was Zambia's fourth leader since independence from Britain. He served for three years from 2008 — a term remembered for economic growth and corruption allegations.

He was vice-president when his predecessor Levy Mwanawasa unexpectedly succumbed to a stroke, propelling him into the top job.

But the veteran diplomat was defeated by opposition leader Michael Sata in the September 2011 elections, despite overseeing major economic growth during his tenure.

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