United Party for National Development

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United Party for National Development
PresidentHakainde Hichilema
Secretary-GeneralSteven Katuka
Social liberalism
Political positionCentre
International affiliationNone
Continental affiliationAfrica Liberal Network
National Assembly
58 / 166

The United Party for National Development (UPND) is a liberal political party in Zambia, led by Hakainde Hichilema. The party is an observer member of the Africa Liberal Network.[1]


The UPND was established in December 1998 and was initially led by Anderson Mazoka, who had left the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy (MMD) shortly beforehand.[2] Mazoka was the party's presidential candidate for the 2001 general elections, finishing second with 27% of the vote, less than 2% behind the winner Levy Mwanawasa of the MMD. In the National Assembly elections the UPND won 49 seats, becoming the second largest party after the MMD.

In March 2006 the party joined the United Democratic Alliance, formed by the three largest opposition parties to contest that year's general elections. After the death of Mazoka in May 2006, Hakainde Hichilema became party leader, and was the alliance's presidential candidate. However, he finished third behind Mwanawasa and Michael Sata with 25% of the vote. The UDA won only 26 seats in the National Assembly, down from the 74 the three parties had won in 2001.

Hichilema was the UPND candidate for the 2008 presidential by-election, finishing third with 20% of the vote. He finished third again in the 2011 general elections with 18% of the vote, whilst the UPND won 28 seats in the National Assembly, becoming the third-largest party.

Hichilema was selected as the party's candidate for the 2015 presidential by-election. Hichilema become the main opponent to the Patriotic Front candidate Edgar Lungu after receiving the backing of several MMD MPs. Although Hichilema received 47% of the vote, Lungu was elected with 48%.

Youth Representation[edit]

The UPND has a youth league, the UPND Youth League formed to mobilize youth concerns. It represents young people from across Zambia.[3]

Electoral history[edit]

Presidential elections[edit]

Election Party candidate Votes % Result
2001 Anderson Mazoka 472,697 27.20% Lost Red XN
2006 Hakainde Hichilema 693,772 25.32% Lost Red XN
2008 Hakainde Hichilema 353,018 19.70% Lost Red XN
2011 Hakainde Hichilema 506,763 18.17% Lost Red XN
2015 Hakainde Hichilema 780,168 46.67% Lost Red XN
2016 Hakainde Hichilema 1,760,347 47.63% Lost Red XN

National Assembly elections[edit]

Election Party leader Votes % Seats +/–
2001 Anderson Mazoka 416,236 23.77%
49 / 159
Increase 49
2006 Hakainde Hichilema 610,608

(as part of UDA)

26 / 159
Decrease 48
2011 Hakainde Hichilema 464,527 17.21%
28 / 159
Increase 2
2016 Hakainde Hichilema 1,525,049 41.66%
58 / 156
Increase 30


  1. ^ "ALN Member Parties". Africa Liberal Network.
  2. ^ Tom Lansford (2014) Political Handbook of the World 2014, CQ Press, p1615
  3. ^ https://flavafm.co.zm/2019/06/10/upnd-youths-in-kitwe-challenge-government-on-disbursement-of-youth-empowerment-funds/ UPND youths in Kitwe challenge government on disbursement of Youth Empowerment Funds – Flava FM 87.7 Copperbelt | 96.9 Lusaka | 92.1 Solwezi

Further reading[edit]