Hakainde Hichilema is reported dead in Johannesburg, South Africa this afternoon following surgical operation on his spine.
It is reported by Reuters that Mr Hakainde Hichilema was flown to South Africa to receive medication after complaining bitterly about an excruciating pain at the spinal cord.
A team of Joburg doctors were said to have conducted a second surgical operation on Hakainde Hichilema’s spine; but unfortunately he passed away just after 45 minutes of the Surgery.
Though it’s obvious to provisionally attribute his sudden demise to the spinal problem, doctors have assured the public they will soon release autopsy report to ascertain the real cause.
An autopsy will fully confirm the cause of his death, but the best guess at the moment is the spinal problem.
Today is a sad day, as Hakainde Hichilema’s death comes as a big shock to his party members and the entire Zambian Community after few months of the national election.
Hakainde Hichilema was a Zambian businessman and politician serving as President of the opposition United Party for National Development.
He was a perennial presidential candidate having contested five times in 2006, 2008, 2011, 2015 and 2016.
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.
He thereafter pursued an MBA in Finance and Business Strategy at the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom.
He served as the chief executive officer of both Coopers and Lybrand Zambia (1994–1998) and Grant Thornton Zambia (1998–2006).
He was a member of the opposition United Party for National Development, a liberal political party.
Following the death of Anderson Mazoka in 2006, he was elected as the party’s new President.
He also served as the leader of the United Democratic Alliance (UDA), an alliance of three opposition political parties.
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.
May his soul rest in peace.