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    Gabon coup leader Brice Nguema being sworn in as president


    Sep 4, 2023

    LIBREVILLE — Brice Nguema, the leader of Gabon’s military junta, is being sworn in as the nation’s interim president.

    General Nguema led last Wednesday’s coup against Ali Bongo, toppling the president shortly after he was named winner of a disputed election.

    The general has some popular support – crowds of cheering civilians turned up at his inauguration.

    However, there are concerns Gen Nguema’s rule will be a continuation of the 55-year Bongo dynasty.

    Ali Bongo’s father, Omar, was in power for 41 years before he died in 2009 and was succeeded by his son.

    The general spent most his career in the Bongo’s inner circle and is even thought to be Ali Bongo’s cousin.

    They also warn that that the military shows no sign of handing back power.

    Sympathisers of the military leadership are expected to attend Monday’s inauguration, the latest in a series of takeovers across West and Central Africa.

    Gabon is the sixth Francophone country to fall under military rule in the last three years as former colonial power France struggles to maintain its influence on the continent.

    Gabon has been suspended from the African Union following the coup, which has been condemned by the UN and France. — BBC

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