Zambia’s former President, Edgar Lungu has called on Zambians to demand for an early election, accusing his successor Hakainde Hichilema of failing to run the economy.
Mr Lungu also accused President Hichilema of failing to manage the cholera outbreak which has claimed the lives of nearly 600 people since last October.
Speaking at an opposition media briefing on Wednesday, Mr Lungu said Zambians should put pressure on the president to accept that an early election was “imperative”.
“If you Zambians demand that we call upon Hakainde Hchilema to resign and call for an early election, let’s go that route, but it should come from you,” Mr Lungu said.
In a swift response from the government spokesperson, Cornelius Mweetwa dismissed Mr Lungu’s allegations and urged Zambians to give the president enough time to deliver his campaign promises.
Mr Mweetwa accused the former leader of ruining the country’s economy during his six years in office. Mr Lungu announced a comeback to politics last October, prompting the government to withdraw his retirement benefits.
He retired from politics in 2021 after suffering a crushing defeat in a presidential election. His return to politics sets the stage for a bruising 2026 presidential race.