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Kabimba is the Man to watch – USA Foreign Affairs

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Wynter Kabimba

Wynter Kabimba

The USA Council for Foreign Affairs has reported that Wynter Kabimba the president for Rainbow Party is the Man to watch in Zambian politics.

Kabimba as Secretary General of Patriotic Front was instrumental in the party’s victory in 2011, ending the 20 year-rule of the MMD party. He served as Justice Minister before he was fired and then founded Rainbow Party. He will be one of the presidential candidates in Zambia’s General Elections next year.

The USA Council for Foreign Affairs website last week published an article that Kabimba could come out with a clear pro-poor policy and emerge as a strong contender.

President Lungu

President Lungu

In the article headlined “Zambia’s Uncertain Future, the USA Council reports that Kabimba has the potential to attract the support of prominent factions that are still with PF, but he does not have much time to build grassroots consensus.

And that many Zambians see President Edgar Lungu as weak, with few prospects of winning again in 2016.

“He does have the advantage of controlling the levers of state power, however If the Bemba faction continues to support him, he still has a fighting chance,” reads the article in parts.

The Website observes that Lungu’s main rival during the January 20, 2015 presidential by-election, Hakainde Hichilema of the opposition United Party for National Development (UPND), is on an upward trend and has a strong chance of winning.

Lungu beat Hichilema with only 27, 000 votes in the election.

File: HH arriving in Solwezi

File: HH arriving in Solwezi

The USA Council says although Hichilema’s party has more than doubled it’s vote share over the 2011 election, questions remain about his suitability for the presidency; his business interests may foreshadow policies that favor his own investments rather than the general public.

Hichilema is reported to have benefited from 1990s privatisation initiatives, having made $12 million in commissions and fees.

According to the analysis by the USA Coucil, Lungu and Hichilema lack a clear policy vision for the country. Kabimba, on the other hand, is supported by sectors of the Zambian intelligentsia that played a key role in the development of Micheal Sata’s pro-poor agenda. They are likely to help Kabimba develop a stronger programme. He might be the man to watch in the longer term, but a victory in 2016 is unlikely.

The full story from USA Council for Foreign Affairs can be read by clicking here.

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