Gabon’s Junta Plans Two-Year Transition Back to Civilian Rule
In a recent statement, Gabon’s newly appointed Prime Minister, Raymond Ndong Sima, revealed the military government’s commitment to organizing free elections within the next two years.
Ndong Sima was appointed last week as head of the transitional government by General Brice Oligui Nguema, who led the August coup d’état against President Ali Bongo Ondimba.
Ndong Sima, 68, is a Paris-educated economist who served as prime minister under Bongo from 2012 to 2014 before becoming a critic and competing against him in the 2016 and 2023 presidential campaigns.
His appointment, announced on state TV, was made in a decree on Thursday by Oligui.
New Electoral Code
Following the guidelines of the transitional constitution, individuals in this temporary government will not be allowed to run for the next presidential election.
Additionally, the general has pledged the implementation of a fresh constitution through a nationwide referendum and the introduction of a revised electoral code.
According to the PM, a two-year plan for transition to civilian rule is a “reasonable objective” proposal for bringing stability to the country.
- “It’s good to set off with a reasonable objective by saying: we have the desire to see the process come to an end in 24 months so we can go back to elections,” said Raymond Ndong Sima, prime minister during the transition. That period could end up being slightly longer or shorter, he added.
- “The principle announced is that there is no longer either an opposition or a majority, so we are taking people in all political families.”
- “It would not however be good for the military to stand, so they can be impartial and objective arbiters of the elections,” he said