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Zambia President Edgar Lungu collapses after ‘sudden dizziness’

This file photo taken on May 21, 2016 shows Zambian President Edgar Lungu addressing tens of thousands of supporters at the Heroes Stadium in Lusaka, as he launches his re-election campaign ahead of polling day on August 11.

Zambia President Edgar Lungu collapsed in the capital, Lusaka, during a national defence day event on Sunday, local media reported.

Shortly after, Secretary to the Cabinet, Dr Simon Miti, issued a statement to reporters and the State TV, assuring the local public and the international community that President Lungu “is well and has continued to discharge his duties”.

Dr Miti disclosed that during the observation of the 45th Defence Force Day Commemoration and Investiture Ceremony, the President experienced “sudden dizziness” but recovered immediately.

Mr Lungu is said to have walked on his own to his car and returned to State House.

The Zambian leader had a similar experience in 2015, caused by what the presidency said was an “oesophagus condition”.

The four-hour defence day ceremony took place at Lusaka’s Freedom Statute on Independence Avenue where the Defence Forces showcased their military prowess.

President Lungu used the event to conduct an investiture ceremony to honour gallant men and women in uniform.

Zambia is preparing for a general election set for August 12.

President Lungu ascended to power in a by-election necessitated by Michael Sata’s death in 2014.