- 1 History
- 2 Government
- 3 Political Parties
- 4 Economy
- 5 transportation
- 6 Military
- 7 International Relations
The earliest inhabitants of Zambia were Khoisan hunter-gatherers. In the 12th century, Bantu speakers started settling in the area. The Portuguese explorer Francisco José Maria de Lacerda was the first European to reach Zambia. However, Zambia was ultimately colonized by the British, instead of the Portuguese. Zambia gained independence in 1964 as a multiparty state. However, Zambia became a single party state in 1972. The first president of Zambia, Kenneth Kaunda, embarked on an socialist economic program designed to make Zambia prosperous and self-sufficient. This program worked for a while. Zambia’s highly nationalized economy took a dive in the early 70’s. This was mainly due to the fact the price of Zambia’s number one export (copper) had fallen. By the 1980’s, Zambia had a huge debt and was dependent on loans from the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. These poor economic conditions led to several strikes.
The loss of foreign aid after doomsday made Zambia’s already bad economy worse. This led to a series of anti-government protests. Kenneth Kaunda responded to these protests by ordering the military to crack down on the public. Although this tactic ended up causing more turmoil, Kaunda remained resolute. However, many members of the National Assembly believed negotiations with the public to be essential to ensure national stability. Unfortunately, the National Assembly was powerless make reforms because the Zambian constitution gave Kaunda all the real power. Eventually, the National Assembly decided that Kaunda needed to be removed from power. In January 1987, the National Assembly overthrew Kaunda with the help of General Christon Tembo.
Transition to Multiparty Democracy
Shortly after the overthrow of Kaunda, the UNIP invited several protesters to a conference to discuss the future of Zambia. Early in the conference, an agreement to create a new multiparty constitution was reached. After weeks of debate the new constitution was drafted. This new Constitution drastically reduced the power of president while strengthening parliament and the judiciary.
The Election of 1987
Elections were held in August. The election ended with Christon Tembo of the Republican Union beating Mainza Chona of the UNIP. Chona had tried to win votes by pointing out that during Post-Doomsday he had been a major critic of Kanuda and had been a one of the organizers of the coup against Kaunda. Tembo responded by pointing out that before Doomsday Mainza had led the committee that wrote the Constitution of 1972 that rendered the assembly unable to stop Kanuda from abusing his powers.
The Tembo Administration
Tembo’s two terms were a period of relative peace and reconstruction. There were a few riots in 1989 over a scandal involving minister of the treasury Frederick Chiluba embezzling funds, but they were soon peacefully quelled by president Tembo launching a modestly successful anti-corruption campaign. President Tembo was also known for decentralizing the economy, signing trade deals with Zimbabwe, Katanga, Malawi, and funding a few public work projects.
The Mung'omba Administration
Chirston Tembo was succeeded by Dean Mung'omba. President Mung'omba was a skilled orator and diplomat. Unfortunately for Mung'omba, this wasn’t enough for him to win the election of 2004 against Anderson Mazoka. A failed scheme to have engineers from the University of Zambia reverse engineer old automobiles to make cars for the military at an abandoned Land Rover plant in Ndola was also a major factor in his defeat
The Mazoka/Tetamashimba Administration
The Mazoka administration was known for its pro-poor policies, like several farm subsidies and an education reform plan. Mazoka also managed to gain financial support from New Britain to repair Zambia’s railways. The Mazoka administration was cut short when Mazoka died in 2006. Mazoka’s vice president, Benny Tetamashimba, continued Mazoka’s polices but he was not able to take Mazorka’s place in the hearts of the public and thus he lost the election of 2008 to Rupiah Banda.
The Banda Administration
President Banda shared Mazoka’s support for repairing Zambia’s railways. He saw them as a vital tool for promoting commerce. President Banda was also interested in gaining access to the markets of the Pacific. So, in 2010. he gave foreign aid to Mozambique in exchange for the right to let Zambian merchants freely use port facilities in Beira. This deal led to a great increase in the export of Zambian cooper. President Banda easily won reelection in 2012
On May 17th 2013, Zambia suffered a harsh raid by soldiers from one of the small Soviet-ruled states in what used to be eastern Angola. This incursion caused the people of Zambia to decide that they had had enough of the occasional raids by these states. Thus, the Government of Zambia launched operation "Kingdoms Fall" to secure their borders by conquering them. The invasion of the kingdoms has harmed relationships with the Republic of Angola because Angola is unhappy that Zambia has occupied territory that they have claimed.
Zambia is a presidential representative democratic republic, whereby the President of Zambia is both head of state and head of government. The constitution which made Zambia a multiparty state also enlarged the National Assembly from 136 members to a maximum of 158 members, reduced presidential terms from five to four years, and established an electoral commission.
Parties Represented in the National Assembly
Alliance for Democracy and Development
Forum for Democracy and Development
United Party for National Development
Note the Republican Union is essentially the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy founded four years earlier and with a different name.
The Union Party is a relatively new single issue party. Their goal is for Zambia to unite with North Zimbabwe and Malawi into a state called the Mutapa Coalition. They are affiliated with the Malawi-based Coalition Party.
After Doomsday, trade was limited to a regional scale. Trade became increasingly erratic as Zambia’s neighbors descended into civil war. During the early 90’s, Zambia’s neighbors started to stabilize which resulted in improved trade conditions. Still, international trade was slow until president Chirston Tembo signed trade deals with North Zimbabwe, Malawi and Katanga. Since then, Zambia’s copper industry has regained a small portion of its former glory. Exports of Zambian cooper have further increased since President Banda gained access to the markets of the Pacific for Zambia. Agriculture also plays a very important part in Zambia's economy. There are also a few factories left running in Ndola. Zambeef Products Ltd. is the leading agri-business in Zambia. Zambeef operates five abattoirs, four farms, numerous retail outlets, and a fast-food chain (ZamChick Inn) throughout the country. During the 2010's Zambia has received significant industrial investment from New Britain and to a lesser extant Zimbawe
Zambia has a Ramshackle, yet still serviceable network of railways. Zambian trains can reach Katanga though the Ndola to Sakania line. Zambian railways are also connected to Zimbabwe via the Victoria Falls Bridge to Bulawayo route. a A railroad between Chipata and Mchinji open in 2017 giving zambia acess to malawia . Zambia once had a link to the Tanzanian port of Dar es Salaam via the TAZARA Railway. The TAZARA Railway is no longer in use since portions of track have been ruined during the anarchic period in Tanzania.
The Zambian Defense Force consists of about 7,500 soldiers. Zambia once had an air force but it was decommissioned because it was to becoming too expensive for the government to maintain.The main duty of the Zambian military is guarding Zambia’s borders. Many troops are stationed on the western border in order to discourage the Soviet Kingdoms of Angola from raiding Zambian territory. The kingdoms haven’t done much raiding since the early 90’s but they still do attack border towns on occasions. Despite the infrequency of raids many Zambian people have pressured their government to invade the kingdoms.
Zambia has strong ties with North Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Katanga and Malawi. Zambia also has trade and diplomatic connections with the Republic of Angola, South Zimbabwe, New Britain, and several of the Tanzanian breakaway states. Recently, Zambia is planning to open diplomatic channels with the ANZC and the formerly isolationist Republic of Botswana.