Zambia Reports (Lusaka)

Zambia: President Sata Rumoured to Be Evacuated

Security officials have evacuated President Michael Sata from State House for urgent medical treatment in the United Kingdom late Monday evening, according to sources close to State House.

Road closures and mobilisations of presidential vehicles have been observed, while Minister of Finance Alexander Chikwanda has been appointed Acting President.

Over the past two years, President Sata has made numerous unannounced trips abroad to India and the United Kingdom for medical treatment. As these trips are treated with great secrecy.

Officials have denied that Sata was moved to South Africa. They have not commented on the story of his travel to the United Kingdom.

This past week has featured two separate public appearances by the normally reclusive President Sata, as he appeared at High Court to give testimony against a journalist he was suing for defamation, and then on Sunday, he attended the Africa Freedom Day commemoration ceremony. The head of state was unable to attend the scheduled opening of Heroes Stadium in Lusaka.

On both occasions, he was observed to be struggling and requiring physical assistance. At Sunday's event, he arrived 90 minutes late, and only stayed for 10 minutes. These were the first public appearances since the abrupt Labour Day event, when President Sata cut off all the speeches after delivering his remarks in under one minute.

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