The Zambian president, Frederick Chiluba, has defied his own high court and expelled his vice-president and eight other cabinet ministers from the ruling party for opposing plans for a constitutional amendment allowing him to cling to power for another five years.

Zambia's vice president and 10 government ministers are to boycott a special ruling party congress meeting called to extend President Frederick Chiluba's rule.

Female Zambian politicians this week are holding a conference in Lusaka to define a strategy on how to rise the percentage of women candidates in the forthcoming Zambian legislative and presidential elections. Hurdles for women candidates are observed as being high.

Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Services permanent secretary Susan Sikaneta on Friday tried in vain to deny the existence of rampant corruption in government.

The United Nations food agency has announced that 84,000 refugees who fled Democratic Republic of the Congo for Zambia are facing hunger amid dwindling food supplies.