Gabon: Military leaders free ousted president Ali Bongo Ondimba
The military leaders who staged a coup in Gabon have freed ousted president Ali Bongo Ondimba and he is now allowed to travel abroad, a junta spokesperson said on Wednesday, CNN reported.
The military leaders who staged a coup in Gabon have freed ousted president Ali Bongo Ondimba and he is now allowed to travel abroad, a junta spokesperson said on Wednesday, CNN reported. Bongo has reportedly been held under house arrest since the coup in the Central African nation in late August.
Junta spokesperson Colonel Ulrich Manfoumbi said on state television, "Given his state of health, the former President of the Republic Ali Bongo Ondimba is free to move about. He may, if he wishes, travel abroad to receive medical check-ups." He was reading a statement from transitional leader General Brice Oligui Nguema.
State television also released images showing Bongo greeting Abdou Abarry, head of the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa, at Bongo's residence in the capital Libreville. The deposed Gabonese leader has been rarely seen since the coup. Shortly after his overthrow, a video surfaced of him appealing to supporters to "make noise" after military officers placed him on house arrest.
"The people here have arrested me… I'm in the residence… I don't know what is going on," he said in the footage. Bongo, 64, suffered a stroke in 2018 and spent months outside Gabon, receiving treatment in Morocco. Questions swirled around his capacity to continue as president, triggering an unsuccessful coup in 2019.
He had been in power for 14 years since succeeding his father Omar Bongo in 2009 and sought another term in last month's disputed elections. He was announced the winner in the polls, described by the junta as an "outrageously biased electoral process." (ANI)
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