Baku-APA. Zambia’s interim leader Guy Scott on Tuesday announced that a presidential by-election will be held on January 20, 2015, APA reports quoting XInhua.
The election will be held following the death of President Michael Sata on Oct. 28 at London’s King Edward VII Hospital where he had gone for a medical check-up.
The country’s constitution demands that a presidential election be held within 90 days if the office is vacant.
The Zambian acting president said during a press briefing at his office that the holding of the election was in line with the country’s constitution.
Scott, who is not eligible to stand as a candidate due to a parentage clause in the constitution that bars people whose parents were not born in Zambia to seek the country’s top job, has hoped that peace will prevail during campaigns.
So far, a number of opposition political parties have adopted candidates to contest the presidential election, among them are Nevers Mumba, leader of the largest opposition party, the Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) and Hakainde Hichilema, leader of the second biggest opposition party, the United Party for National Development (UPND).
Former President Rupiah Banda, who had hoped to contest for the presidency on the largest opposition party’s ticket has suffered a setback after Mumba declared that he will contest the race.
The country’s governing party, the Patriotic Front, is yet to announce its candidate as it is still consulting on the mode of choosing its candidate. The governing party is currently embroiled in wrangles on the mode of adopting its candidate, with some saying the party’s highest organ, should choose the candidate while others are calling for a general conference.
However, party members interested in contesting for the governing party congress have been asked to file in their nominations. So far, five party members, including Sata’s son, Mulenga, have shown interest to contest the party’s presidency.
There are over 30 political parties in the southern African nation but many of them only exist on paper.