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Also unchanged is the political status of the Electoral Commission.
Critics have called for more institutional independence for the commission with respect to both its composition and its funding.
He surprised many by launching an anticorruption drive that began by targeting his predecessor.
The strategy appeared to be tantamount to political suicide—Mwanawasa had relied on the support of staunch Chiluba backers for his narrow win in 2001, and the opposition had vowed not to repeat its fateful fractionalization in the next electoral cycle.
Yet Mwanawasa returned to office for a second term in elections held in September 2006.
He apparently benefited from the untimely (but not suspicious) death of his main rival, 2001 runner-up Anderson Mazoka, in May 2006.
Meanwhile, the MMD won 72 out of the 150 National Assembly seats, with the constitutional provision that the president may appoint up to 8 additional lawmakers further guaranteeing MMD control over parliament.
Toward the end of his term, only widespread objections from civil society and some members of the MMD itself, supplemented by pressure from donor countries and organizations, kept Chiluba from seeking to extend his tenure beyond the constitutionally mandated limit of two terms.
Chiluba’s hand-picked successor, one-time vice president Levy Mwanawasa, won the presidential election in 2001, prevailing by the slimmest of margins over a sharply divided opposition.
The draft constitution produced by the Mung’omba Constitutional Review Commission, which Mwanawasa had appointed to consider revising or replacing the constitution, had recommended a new requirement that the winner of a presidential election garner more than 50 percent of the votes—in contrast to the prevailing single-round, first-past-the-post system.
Yet despite having pledged to sponsor a new constitution, Mwanawasa delayed making any changes until after the electoral cycle.
Voter registration, previously conducted only before elections, was reformed to allow continuous updates of the voter rolls.