Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


EU says Gabon court failed to address poll 'anomalies'

26 September 2016, 10:09

Libreville - EU monitors said on Sunday that Gabon's top court had failed to rectify vote-counting "anomalies" in fiercely-disputed elections in which President Ali Bongo extended his family's rule in the oil-rich nation into a fifth decade.

The European Union's electoral observer mission said it "regretted" that Gabon's Constitutional Court, which on Saturday ruled against opposition demands for a recount, "had been unable to satisfactorily rectify anomalies observed during the count".

Opposition leader Jean Ping had filed a legal challenge after Bongo was declared the winner by a mere 6 000 votes in the August 27 election.

Ping, a career diplomat and a former top official at the African Union, had asked for a recount in Haut-Ogooue province, a stronghold of the Bongo family where the president was declared to have won more than 95 percent of the vote, with turnout at more than 99%.

The Constitutional Court in its ruling upheld Bongo's victory and put the winning margin higher at around 11 000 votes.

National dialogue 

The UN Secretary general Ban Ki-moon said in a statement that he had "taken note" of the court's verdict and welcomed Bongo's call for a national dialogue to defuse the situation.

"Such a dialogue must be representative of all stakeholders towards national reconciliation, inclusive governance, and the adoption of consensual measures for peaceful and credible legislative elections in December 2016," it said.

Ban also called upon both sides to "demonstrate maximum restraint and fully respect human rights and fundamental freedoms".

Bongo's family has exercised a long grip on power in the oil-rich country of 1.8 million people.

Ali Bongo took over from his father Omar Bongo, who ruled Gabon for 41 years until his death in 2009.

Gabon has abundant oil, minerals and tropical timber, and its per-capita national income is four times greater than that of most sub-Saharan nations.

'Interference is not good' 

But a third of the population of 1.8 million live below the poverty line - a gap that has fuelled resentment towards a regime notorious for corruption.

Violence erupted on August 31 after Bongo was declared the winner. Demonstrators set fire to the parliament and clashed violently with police, who arrested around a thousand people.

Opposition figures say more than 50 people were killed in the violence. The government has given a toll of three dead.

World powers have so far refrained from congratulating Bongo after his controversial win.

Former colonial ruler France deplored that the court verdict clearing Bongo's victory "has not lifted all the doubts" about the process.

Nor has the African Union yet congratulated the 57-year-old leader, who on Sunday struck a defiant note, telling Radio France Internationale that "we don't need people to speak about Gabon's problems".

"Interference is not a good thing," Bongo added.

Ping has made clear he believes Bongo has the constitutional court in his pocket, referring to it as "the Tower of Pisa that always leans the same way".



Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Types of men that are a waste of ...

Most women end up heartbroken because they were trying to convince the wrong man to be in a relationship/ marriage. Read more...

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Cheating is hardwork!

Cheating, although enjoyable by the person doing it initially, it gets to a point they start realizing that it was never even worth it. Read more...

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Dating that one person that socie...

Works at a massage parlour. Works at Millionaires Club (that one on Baricho road) - you know the ones I am talking about. Read more...

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
What do men mean when they say th...

As much as men think they are the ones confused by relationships, they have a better idea of it than most women actually do. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
ODM rebels sweat in Kisii as Oran...

ODM rebels are sweating in Kisii after the Orange Party won by elections despite concerted efforts by the ruling Jubilee Party to win the elections. Read more...