General Brice Oligui Nguema, the leader of Gabon’s elite Republican Guard, has been appointed as the transitional leader of the country following a coup.
This announcement comes in response to the electoral commission’s declaration of a victory for President Ali Bongo Ondimba in the recent election, a result that has been heavily contested by the opposition.
President Bongo secured 64.27 percent of the vote, a victory that has been labelled as a “fraud orchestrated” by Bongo and his supporters, according to the opposition. Albert Ossa, the leading opposition candidate who represented a merger of six parties, came in second with 30 percent of the vote.
General Nguema is an influential and enigmatic figure in Gabon, believed to be related to the deposed president. Raised in a military family, his inclination towards joining the military began at a young age. He received his military training at the prestigious Royal Military Academy of Meknes in Morocco.
His exceptional military skills were recognized by members of the former President Omar Bongo’s Republican Guard. Nguema served as Bongo’s military assistant or “aide-de-camp” in the guard until President Bongo passed away in 2009.
Following Omar Bongo’s death, Ali Bongo, his son, assumed power in October 2009. Nguema was subsequently sent on diplomatic missions to Morocco and Senegal but returned to Gabon in 2018. A year later, he assumed the leadership position within the Republican Guard.
With his extensive military background and close ties to the previous and current presidents, General Nguema is seen as a natural choice for the transitional leader role. However, the situation remains uncertain, and the international community is closely monitoring the developments in Gabon.
The military takeover and the appointment of General Nguema has triggered concerns regarding the democratic process in Gabon. The opposition’s allegations of election fraud and the subsequent military intervention raise questions about the legitimacy of the current government.
The international community has called for a peaceful resolution to the political crisis in Gabon and urged all parties involved to respect the rule of law and protect human rights. It remains to be seen how General Nguema will navigate these challenges and steer the country through this transitional period.
Gabon announced Curfew
In response to the recent political upheaval in Gabon, the leaders of the coup have announced a curfew from 6pm to 6am. However, amidst these trying times, they have assured the public that they will still be allowed to move about freely during the day on Thursday.
Lt. Col. Ulrich Manfoumbi, the president of the transition, emphasised the importance of maintaining calm and serenity in the country. As Gabon enters a new era, their aim is to guarantee the peace, stability, and dignity of their beloved nation.
The curfew serves as a measure to ensure the safety and security of the citizens, while allowing them to go about their daily activities during daylight hours. It is a time for the Gabonese people to come together and collectively navigate through this uncertain period, with hopes of forging a brighter future for their country.