Obasanjo Storms Zambia To Broker Peace Between President Lungu And Opposition LeaderHichilema
Nigeria’s Former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo is presently in Zambia.
His mission in Lusaka is to make peace between the current President, Edgar Chagwa Lungu and the main opposition leader, Hakainde Hichilema, who is in prison waiting for trial.
President Lungu’s spokesperson, Mr. Amos Chanda in a release said the two leaders discussion centered on peace efforts as well as his anti-polio campaign in Africa.
Chanda said the Nigerian leader equally asked to be allowed to visit imprisoned opposition leader, Hichilema who has been in detention since April facing charges for treason.
Hichilema, leader of the United Party for National Development Party (UPND), narrowly lost to President Lungu in the 2016 election, though the opposition claimed their mandate was stolen.
The Former President and elder statesman, Obasanjo has also been involved in international mediation efforts in Angola, Burundi, Namibia, Mozambique and South Africa.
In 2008, the United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, appointed Obasanjo as his Special Envoy to the Great Lakes region, where he played an integral part in mediation efforts in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.
He was also in Senegal to mediate in the country’s political standoff when President Abdoulaye Wade wanted to run for a third term in office.
It is therefore believed that his current visit to Zambia will help reduce the political tension that heightened since the main opposition leader, Hichilema was put behind bars at Mukobeko Maximum Prison in Kabwe, Central Province.
Hichilema was alleged to have disobeyed traffic rules by not giving way to a Presidential motorcade, thereby endangering the life of the Head of State which according to Zambian Laws falls under treason.
President Lungu has since directed the Zambia Airforce (ZAF) to fly the former Nigerian President to Mukobeko Prison for the meeting.