On Thursday August 11, Zambians would be voting in hotly contested presidential polls. There would be a total of 10 contenders. Nine men and one woman.
The only female is 56-year-old economist and farmer, Edith Nawakwi. She is the candidate for the Forum for Democracy and Development (FDD).
Former Nigerian president, Goodluck Jonathan, who is the Africa Union’s Observer Mission chief to the country met with Edith ahead of the polls. He celebrated the fact that women were aspiring to the highest political seat in African countries.
I am glad to see that Zambia has a woman running for the highest office in the land and challenge other African states to allow women to run.
I am glad to see that Zambia has a woman running for the highest office in the land and challenge other African states to allow women to run— Goodluck E. Jonathan (@GEJonathan) August 10, 2016
Edith is not a new face to Zambian politics having joined the former ruling Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MDD) in 1991.
In the over 20 years that she has been engage positions including being the first woman Finance Minister. She is however unlikely to become the country’s first female president, according to political watchers.
The polls are seen as a two-horse race between incumbent president Edgar Lungu and the main opposition’s Hakainde Hichilema who came in second in the last elections.
“We have always been ready. We shall win this election because we have travelled this country far and wide. We [FDD] understand the interests of the poor, especially those in rural areas. Our chances are getting brighter and brighter. Those underestimating us will be shocked,” she is quoted to have said in the lead up to the polls.