Rowland Msiska, Secretary to the Zambian Cabinet, has confirmed the death of Zambian President Michael Sata, in London.
He said Sata passed away at a London hospital Tuesday evening, where he arrived for medical treatment last week.
Msiska called for calm and said information about the funeral would be communicated in due course.
An official who preferred anonymity said there had been concern over the 77-year-old Sata’s health since he stopped making public appearances in June.
“Sata is in ill health for some time, and his public appearances had grown increasingly rare,’’ he said.
Sata who had ruled the Southern African country since 2011, was discharged two days ago from a London clinic to receive medical care in a hotel room.
The official said a covert battle for his succession has been raging in the ruling Patriotic Front.
He said Sata fired justice minister Wynter Kabimba, one of the frontrunners to succeed him in August.
An election is not due until 2016.
He said a cabinet meeting and an announcement were expected later Wednesday