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Gabon junta appoints former Bongo ally transitional prime minister

Gabon's Prime Minister Raymond Ndong Sima speaks during the opening session of the New York Forum Africa in Libreville on June 8, 2012   -  
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Gabon's transitional president, General Brice Oligui Nguema, appointed Raymond Ndong Sima, an economist and vocal opponent of President Ali Bongo, overthrown by the military a week ago, as transitional Prime Minister on Thursday, according to a decree read out on state television.

Mr. Ndong Sima, 68, had been Mr. Bongo's Prime Minister from 2012 to 2014, but had distanced himself from power, which he regularly accused of bad governance, to the point of running against the head of state in the 2016 and 2023 presidential elections.

General Oligui, who led the coup d'état on August 30 against Ali Bongo, who had just been proclaimed re-elected in a fraudulent election according to the military, was sworn in on Monday as President of a transition period, the duration of which he did not specify, and at the end of which he promised "free elections".

On Monday, he also announced the formation of a transitional government comprising personalities from all sides of the political spectrum.

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