Zambia’s Hichilema travels with lean team to US


Unlike Malawi President Lazarus Chakwera who travels with the whole village in a private chartered jet, Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema travelled to the United Nations General Assembly with a lean team of two ministers aboard a commercial Qatar Airways flight from the main airport in Lusaka.

Hichilema left Zambia on Sunday for the United Nations’ General Assembly in New York, United States of America.  He used a commercial flight for the trip and has travelled with only two ministers.

“Just like we promised before taking office, we will ensure prudent management of public resources and have therefore travelled with a lean team that is composed of Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Finance, Honourables Stanley Kakubo and Dr Situmbeko Musokotwane respectively,” Hichilema wrote on Facebook.

Chakwera in South Africa last year

Social media users have praised Hichilema, saying he is different from other leaders in the SDAC region.

“This is a first in the region where [Zimbabwe’s President] Emmerson Mnangagwa and [Malawi’s Lazarus] Chakwera take planes packed with hangers on”, tweeted Zimbabwe journalist Hopewell Chin’ono.

Another social media user wrote: “Africa is coming up: Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema has left Zambia for the UN General Assembly, New York using a commercial flight”.

President Chakwera usually travels using a chartered Malawians Airlines plane.  Last year, the South African Government said the Malawi leader took 66 people to South Africa.

Chakwera has not travelled to United Nations General Assembly this year and will he attend the summit virtually.