Tuesday, January 11

Mr. Integrity

Bush isn't the only head of state shuffling his cabinet. Recently, Levy Mwanawasa, President of Zambia, did the same. Shortly thereafter, in an interview with the BBC, Mwanawasa claimed his inability to eradicate poverty in his country is one of his "failures" as President.

President Mwanawasa(image courtesy of bbc.co.uk)

Roundly respected, Mwanawasa has earned the nickname "Mr. Integrity." Zambia's former VP and hand-picked successor of former President Chiluba, Mwanawasa launched an anti-corruption campaign against his mentor only weeks after being sworn in as the nation's third president.

A lawyer by training, Mwanawasa climbed to the top of his profession, including being the first Zambian lawyer appointed advocate and solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales. He distinguished himself further by defending former VP Lt. General Christon Tembo, charged with treason for trying to overthrow former President Kaunda's government in 1989. (The trial ended abruptly when Kaunda pardoned all political prisoners.)

In a continent replete with politicians on the take -- including Chiluba, charged with 169 counts of corruption, mentioned elsewhere on ZAMblog -- Zambia's President is a godsend. To learn more about Mr. Integrity, read the profile of Mwanawasa by BBC reporter Anthony Kunda.