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Zambia’s first president, Kenneth Kaunda dies aged 97

Kenneth Kaunda, Zambia’s first president, and a key figure in its independence struggle, has died at the age of 97, his family has confirmed.

Kaunda was admitted to a hospital in the capital Lusaka on Monday suffering from pneumonia. His aides said he did not have Covid-19.

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In the 1950s, Kaunda was a key figure in what was then Northern Rhodesia’s independence movement from Britain.

He became president following independence in 1964.

As head of the left-leaning United National Independence Party (UNIP), Kaunda then led the country through decades of one-party rule.

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He stepped down after losing multi-party elections in 1991.

Kaunda – popularly known as KK – was a strong supporter of efforts to end apartheid in South Africa. He was also a leading supporter of liberation movements in Mozambique and what is now Zimbabwe.

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“I am sad to inform we have lost Mzee,” Kaunda’s son, Kambarage, wrote on his late father’s Facebook page, using a term of respect. “Let’s pray for him.

Source: Myjoyonline

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