Deposed President Ali Bongo is now free

Gabon’s army leaders say they’ve launched ousted President Ali Bongo from home arrest, the place he has been since they seized energy final week.

This contains permission to journey overseas for medical examinations.

He suffered a stroke in 2018 and his well being has been a significant concern for a lot of within the run-up to the 2023 presidential election.

The military seized energy shortly after saying its victory in these elections, which have been disputed by the opposition.

The announcement of Mr Bongo’s launch follows strain from the ECAS regional bloc and neighboring international locations.

In an announcement learn out on state tv on Wednesday night, military spokesman Colonel Ulrich Manvumbi mentioned the choice to launch Bongo was as a result of his “well being situation”.

He added that “he could, if he so needs, journey overseas for medical examinations.”

Bongo has been in energy within the oil-rich nation since 2009, when he succeeded his father, who dominated the nation for 41 years.

The coup was extensively condemned in Africa and the West, together with France, a former colonial energy that had shut ties to the Bongo household. Gabon is suspended from the African Union.

However, the overthrow of the Bongo household after almost 56 years in energy was welcomed by many Gabonese.

Because the junta introduced Bongo’s launch, requires him to be prosecuted for corruption allegations have elevated.

The French police’s seven-year corruption investigation into the Bongo household, which revealed property together with 39 properties in France and 9 luxurious vehicles, was dropped in 2017. The household has vigorously denied all of the accusations.

“Ali Bongo should face justice,” Bolongi Mwanda Ulrich informed the BBC within the capital, Libreville.

One other resident, Combe Unold, mentioned he had no downside with the ousted president’s launch, however agreed he ought to face justice.

“We’re ready, we are actually a free individuals, we need to work,” he mentioned.

Shortly after the coup, lots of the ousted president’s allies have been arrested, together with Mr. Bongo’s 31-year-old son Noureddine Bongo Valentin, who’s accused of excessive treason and corruption. Nationwide tv confirmed footage of him and his shut Bongo allies in entrance of baggage full of money that he mentioned had been confiscated from their properties. They didn’t touch upon these accusations.

It’s not clear the place Mr. Bongo will go, however the seemingly vacation spot will probably be Morocco, the place he beforehand acquired therapy for a stroke.

He enjoys shut relations with King Mohammed VI of Morocco and is claimed to personal a villa within the palm grove of Marrakech.

Coup chief Common Brice Olegie Nguema was sworn in as transitional president on Monday. He pledged to return the nation to civilian rule after free and truthful elections, however gave no timetable for the switch of energy.

Later, Raymond Ndong Sima, a distinguished opponent of the ousted president, was sworn in because the nation’s interim prime minister on Thursday.

Ndong Sima, a 68-year-old economist, beforehand held the place beneath Bongo from 2012 till 2014, earlier than changing into crucial of him and standing in opposition to him within the nation’s 2016 and 2023 elections.

Previous to Bongo’s launch, Gabon’s junta launched different political prisoners earlier this week, together with pro-democracy activist and chief of probably the most highly effective commerce union, Jean-Remy Yama.

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