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Gabon, Neighboring Nations Unite To Craft Democracy ‘Roadmap’



Gabon, Neighboring Nations Unite To Craft Democracy ‘Roadmap’

Ali Bongo had been in power for 14 years, following in the footsteps of his father, Omar, who ruled Gabon for 41 years

The mediator representing Central Africa in the Gabon crisis and the nation’s newly appointed military leader have reached an agreement to develop a “roadmap” for the reinstatement of democratic governance, following a coup that took place last week, according to an official from the ruling regime.

General Brice Oligui Nguema, who led the coup on August 30, officially assumed the role of interim president on Monday, effectively ending the Bongo family’s half-century rule over the country, known for its oil wealth.

Gabon now joins a list of African countries, including Mali, Guinea, Sudan, Burkina Faso, and Niger, that have experienced coups within the past three years. This trend has raised concerns both within the continent and internationally.

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The Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) dispatched its representative, President Faustin Archange Touadera of the Central African Republic, to Libreville on Tuesday for discussions with Oligui.

Touadera, speaking briefly on Gabonese television, revealed, “ECCAS has designated me as a facilitator tasked with crafting a plan that will pave the way for a swift return to constitutional order, with the approval of the interim president.”

A high-ranking official within Oligui’s administration confirmed that, at this stage, both parties have agreed to create the framework for this plan. However, neither Touadera nor the official provided specific details or a timeline for its implementation.

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The coup on August 30 received support from various quarters, including the military, police, a significant portion of the political opposition, and some members of the ousted President Ali Bongo Ondimba’s party. Ali Bongo was detained by soldiers shortly after being declared the winner of a presidential election marked by allegations of electoral fraud.

Many Gabonese citizens also supported the coup, expressing their weariness with the corrupt Bongo dynasty’s hold on the nation. Despite its significant oil wealth, Gabon has a third of its population living in poverty.

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Ali Bongo had been in power for 14 years, following in the footsteps of his father, Omar, who ruled Gabon for 41 years, known for a regime characterized by corruption and authoritarian governance.

In his inaugural address on Monday, Oligui pledged to organize “free, transparent, and credible elections” to reinstate civilian rule, though he did not specify a timetable.

Following the coup, the 11-member ECCAS suspended Gabon and ordered the immediate relocation of its headquarters from Gabon to Equatorial Guinea, as confirmed by Equatorial Guinea’s Vice President, Teodoro Nguema Obiang Mangue.

Buhari Olanrewaju Ahmed, a seasoned investigative journalist and climate/environmental reporter with a decade of experience, unravels complex issues and amplifies critical voices. His in-depth investigative work and insightful reporting have earned him recognition as a trusted source of information. Ahmed's unwavering commitment to journalism and exceptional storytelling prowess make him a standout figure in investigative journalism. His work drives meaningful conversations, influences policy decisions, and inspires collective efforts toward a sustainable future.

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