Tom Kirkman

President Bongo Safe After Military Coup Fails In Oil-Rich Gabon

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Developing story.

President Bongo Safe After Military Coup Fails In Oil-Rich Gabon

Soldiers in Gabon briefly took over a state radio in a failed coup attempt on Monday, but the government said four of the plotters had been arrested and that "normalcy would be restored" in the oil-rich Central African nation. A fifth suspect was on the run after soldiers announced plans for a “national council of restoration,” in the oil-rich country, where the ruling Bongo family has been dogged by accusations of corruption and fraud during nearly a half-century in power, the NYT noted.


“The army has decided to put itself on the side of the people in order to save Gabon from chaos,” soldiers said after they took over a Gabon radio station.

On Monday, government soldiers swarmed the streets of the capital, Libreville, guarding the national radio and TV stations, and military tanks and armed vehicles were visible. Taking a page out of every populist playbook, the military officers announced plans to "save a democracy in danger."

However, a few hours later, democracy appeared to be in danger again as thing were returning to normal: "The government is in place,” a government spokesman, Guy-Bertrand Mapangou, told France 24. “The institutions are in place."

Meanwhile, the target of the coup, President Ali Bongo Ondimba, has been out of Gabon since October while receiving medical treatment for what many believe was a stroke he suffered while attending a conference in Saudi Arabia according to the NYT. He had sought to reassure the nation he was fit during a New Year’s Eve speech televised from Morocco, where he is recuperating. ... 

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That oughta be good for a .30 to . 40 cent spike in prices in the morning!

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