10 things you didn’t know about Hakainde Hichilema

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  1. Hakainde Hichilema is a Zambian businessman born on the 4th of June 1962.
  2. He is also a politician who has been President of the United Party for National Development, an opposition political party, since 2006.
  3. Hichilema was born in a village in Monze District in present-day Zambia. He received a scholarship to study at the University of Zambia and graduated in 1986 with a BA in Economics and Business Administration.
  4. He thereafter pursued an MBA in Finance and Business Strategy at the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom.
  5. He served as the chief executive officer of both Coopers and Lybrand Zambia (1994–1998) and Grant Thornton Zambia (1998–2006).
  6. In the 2006 election, Hichilema was the candidate of the UDA and ran against incumbent president Levy Mwanawasa of the Movement for Multiparty Democracy and Patriotic Front candidate Michael Sata. He received the endorsement of former President Kenneth Kaunda.
  7. He was one of the two main candidates in the January 2015 presidential election, which he lost by a narrow margin of just 27,757 votes (1.66%) against the ruling party’s candidate, Edgar Lungu. Hichilema denounced the election as a sham and urged his supporters to remain calm.
  8. He was brutally arrested on 11 April 2017 by President Edgar Lungu’s dictatorial regime and charged with Treason after he was accused of endangering the president’s life after his motorcade allegedly refused to give way to the one transporting President Lungu, a case which many viewed as a minor traffic offence and not one that could amount to Treason.
  9. Hichilema strongly denied the charge, which carries a maximum sentence of death penalty
  10. Hichilema was released from Prison on 16 August 2017 and scores of people lined up the roads of Lusaka to have a glimpse of Hichilema as his motorcade left prison and Hichilema emerged through the Sunroof of his vehicle to wave at the cheering crowds.[