7 July 2017

Zambia: Zambian president declares state of emergency

Zambian President Edgar Lungu declared a state of emergency on Wednesday, July 5, after a series of apparent arson attacks, in a move likely to trigger fresh accusations of government authoritarianism, News24reports.

Several fires, including one that burned down the main market in Lusaka on Tuesday, were described by Lungu as "premeditated acts, which, if left unchecked, could have serious socio-economic consequences".

Political tensions have been high in Zambia this year after the arrest and continued detention of opposition leader, Hakainde Hichilema, a wealthy businessman who has run for president five times.