Former Zambian President Banda passes away at the age of 85.

Rupiah Banda, the president of #Zambia from 2008 to 2011, died at the age of 85 after a long battle with colon cancer.

President Hakainde Hichilema remarked, “His life of service to our country and continent shows the purest type of patriotism.”

When President Levy Mwanawasa suffered a stroke and died in 2008, Mr Banda, a career diplomat, was serving as vice-president. He then took office as the country’s fourth president and won the election that followed.

But, after losing that year’s poll to Michael Sata, he stepped down in 2011. Mr. Banda was lauded at the time for conceding loss rather than contesting the outcome.

His presidency was marred by suspicions of corruption, and he was arrested in 2013 after being suspected of stealing millions of dollars.

He refuted the claims, calling them a witch hunt, and he was never found guilty.