Central African bloc calls for extraordinary session following coup in Gabon

By Xinhua
On 31 August 2023 at 05:08

The Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) on Thursday called for the convening of an extraordinary session of Heads of State and Government following the military coup in Gabon, according to a press release.

The ECCAS commission is awaiting the convening of an extraordinary session of Heads of State and Government under the format of the Council for Peace and Security of Central Africa (COPAX), with a view to the appropriate examination of the situation in Gabon, read the press release.

The commission also called for the "rapid return of constitutional order."

With its headquarters in Libreville, the capital of Gabon, the ECCAS is an international organization for the economic, social and cultural development of Africa with a view to creating regional structures that can gradually lead to a common market.

Gabon currently holds the rotating presidency of the ECCAS this year.

Earlier Wednesday, the national electoral body of Gabon announced that President Ali Bongo had won a third term. The military, however, declared on state television that the election results were canceled and placed Bongo under house arrest.

Following the coup, Brice Oligui Nguema, commander-in-chief of the Gabonese Republican Guard, was named as the transition leader of the Central African country Wednesday night. Leaders of the Gabonese military agreed by unanimous vote to appoint Nguema as president of the Committee for the Transition and Restoration of Institutions (CTRI), said Ulrich Manfoumbi Manfoumbi, the committee’s spokesperson.

In a video clip Wednesday, Ali Bongo Ondimba called on the population to "make noise." His son Noureddin Bongo Valentin, along with several senior officials, were said to have been arrested for treason, embezzlement and corruption, among other allegations.

This coup has caused concern among countries in the region.

Angolan President Joao Lourenco will travel to the Republic of the Congo Thursday to discuss the situation in Gabon with the Congolese President Denis Sassou Nguesso, the Angolan News Agency reported Wednesday. Both countries are members of the ECCAS.

Omar Alieu Touray, the president of the Commission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), will attend an informal meeting of the EU foreign ministers in Spain Thursday to discuss the situation in the Sahel and other issues.

African Union (AU) Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki also condemned the coup as a way to resolve the post-election crisis.