(b. 1924) Zambian statesman, President 1964–91
(b. 28 Apr. 1924).
President of Zambia 1964–91Born at Lubwe, he became a teacher and a minister in the Presbyterian Church of Scotland. Politically active from the early 1950s, he advanced to become president of the Zambian National Congress in 1958, and of the United National Independence Party (UNIP) in 1960. He won the elections of 1962, and became Zambia's first President upon independence. A strong critic of Western capitalism, he created a socialist state, and became one of the world's leading opponents of Smith's Rhodesian regime, as well as of apartheid in South Africa. This raised his international profile and, as one of Africa's most respected elder statesmen, he was president of the OAU (African Union), 1983–8. Despite his own outspokenness, he did not tolerate criticism at home, however, and suppressed two revolts in 1986 and 1990. As a result of the country's economic difficulties, discontent became such that he allowed multi‐party elections in 1991, which he lost to Chiluba. He remained an influential voice in public affairs, and was a hostile critic of Chiluba.