See also:
» 08.03.2011 - Zambia President "to win" upcoming polls
» 05.11.2008 - Zambia electoral body to verify disputed polls
» 29.10.2008 - Zambia's vice president warns of violence ahead of polls
» 24.10.2008 - Banda calls for calm in Zambia's fourth presidential polls
» 23.10.2008 - SADC launches observer mission to Zambia's election
» 25.09.2008 - Zambia calls off live radio phone-in programmes
» 19.09.2008 - Banda to keep economic policies
» 10.09.2008 - Zambia announces election date

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Banda sworn in as new Zambian president

afrol News, 3 November - Acting president, Rupiah Banda has been sworn in as Zambian president following 30 October presidential elections victory.

According to final results, Mr Banda beat main opposition candidate, Michael Sata, by 40.1% to 38.1%.

Speaking after his inauguration in capital, Lusaka, Mr Banda promised to follow in the footsteps of late Levy Mwanawasa, who died in August having suffered a stroke a few months earlier.

Opposition leader Michael Sata also promised to pursue a pro-growth agenda but concerns lingered about the strident anti-investment tone of his last campaign for the presidency in 2006.

"I think Banda is the right choice because he has a high level of maturity and good credentials for economic management," said Oliver Saasa, an economist and political commentator based in the capital, Lusaka.

Mr Banda will face pressure to do more to reduce poverty and improve government services, especially in rural areas that have failed to benefit from the economic boom, Mr Saasa said.

However, defeated opposition leader, Michael Sata, and his Patriotic Front Party branded the election a fraud and said they would challenge the result in court.

Mr Sata has demanded a vote recount after Mr Banda was sworn in as president in a disputed poll.

"They are still preparing certain documents and they will be filing them tomorrow," said Given Lubinda, spokesman for Sata's Patriotic Front said today.

He said court petition will ask for a recount and verification of all ballots cast in the election, he said.

Mr Sata, who said poll was marked by discrepancies between vote tallies and number of voters on registration lists, led through two days of counting before Mr Banda overtook him in results late on Saturday.

The opposition leader, who finds strong support among workers and the poor, also alleged fraud in 2006 when he lost presidential election to Mr Mwanawasa.

Mr Banda winner will serve until 2011 - when Mr Mwanawasa's term would have ended.

The margin of victory was 35,209 votes.

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