The people of Zambia have elected a new president, choosing Defense and Justice Minister Edgar Lungu to finish the term of former President Michael Sata, who died in office last fall.
In closely contested balloting January 20 hampered by heavy rains across much of the Southern African nation, Lungu edged businessman Hakainde Hichilema with 48.3 percent of the vote.
The United States congratulates the people of the Republic of Zambia for conducting another democratic election. Facing significant logistical challenges, Zambians went to the polls to uphold their democratic traditions and set an example for African nations and for the world. We acknowledge the important work of the Electoral Commission of Zambia and its chair, as well as the domestic, regional, and international monitoring groups. We hope that any issues will be resolved in the same spirit and democratic tradition.
We encourage the people of Zambia to move forward, as their national motto states, as "One Zambia, One Nation." We look forward to continuing to strengthen our relationship with the Government of the Republic of Zambia and its newly elected president, Edgar Lungu. Together, our two nations have a strong friendship upon which to build.
The United States and Zambia cooperate on providing health care to those most in need, promoting peace and security in the region, attracting investment, and on spurring economic development. We look forward to building an even more dynamic and positive partnership in the years to come.