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Gabon: Brice Oligui Nguema promises to return power to civilians

Brice Oligui Nguema, new interim president of Gabon   -  
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Gabon's new interim president, who came to power in a coup last week, promised to hold "free, transparent and credible elections" and provide amnesty for prisoners of conscience after being sworn in on Monday.

Without specifying the date of the elections, General Brice Oligui Nguema declared that he had requested the participation of all the country's "think tanks" to draft a new constitution, which will be "adopted by referendum" and new electoral codes and “more democratic and respectful of human rights”.

He also “committed” to “handing over power to civilians by organizing free, transparent and credible elections”. He finally announced the appointment “in a few days” of a transitional government made up of “experienced” and “seasoned” people, from whom he asked for the release of “prisoners of conscience” and the return of “political exiles”.

Gabonese opposition candidate Albert Ondo Ossa declined to comment on the inauguration, urging the military to restore constitutional order. For him, the ouster of the president is only a "palace revolution" aimed at perpetuating the rule of the Bongo family.

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