The Tuesday night coup in Gabon has brought to an end the nearly 54 years presidency of the Bongo family as the military leaders on Wednesday, announced Gen. Brice Clotaire Oligui Nguema as the new leader of the central African country.
General Nguema who was the republican guard chief and a cousin to the deposed President Ali Bongo was selected by the coup leaders after a closed door meeting that was held by the coup leaders shortly after the military took over power and dissolved all state institutions and closed all borders.
After President Bongo was placed under house arrest, he asked the citizens to “make some noise” in his support but the atmosphere was in contrast with his plea as Gabonese in the capital, Brazzaville scattered into the streets, celebrating with Soldiers and thanking them for taking out the President.
The military leaders announced the coup after they cancelled the election that extended the reign of President Bongo who took over from his Father, Omar Bongo who ruled for 41 years.
Videos shared on Social Media showed General Nguema on the shoulders of military men who paraded him round the streets of the country, a move that has been condemned by world leaders from the United States, United Kingdom, France, Canada amongst others.
The coup leaders vowed to respect “Gabon’s commitments to the national and international community” and accused the deposed president of “unpredictable, irresponsible governance” that threw the country into chaos.
The coup leaders said people around the president had been arrested for “high betrayal of state institutions, massive embezzlement of public funds (and) international financial embezzlement”.