Monday, 3 October 2016

Gabon's 40-member 'inclusive' cabinet named, main opposition absent

Gabonese Prime Minister, Emmanuel
Issoze Ngondet, named a 40-member
government as scheduled on Sunday
which included few opposition

The government, expected to be open
to the opposition, included Bruno Ben
Moubamba, an opposition candidate in
this year’s presidential election,
appointed Deputy Prime Minister and
Minister of Urban Development and
The other opposition member in the
new government is Estelle Ondo, who
is the Vice President of another
opposition party, the National Union.
She takes the position of Minister of
Forest Economy, Fisheries and
These two are the opposition members
that make up the “inclusive
government” which according to the
prime minister, has over 30% women
representation “ready to work for the
The camp of disgruntled opposition
member Jean Ping has questioned the
inclusiveness of the new government
which has none of their members
“So that’s the inclusive government? …
They just picked the fallen and
hungry,” AFP quoted the
communications director of Jean Ping,
Jean-Gaspard Ntoutoume Emane.
The new government retained some
notable figures in the old government
including the government spokesman
and Minister of Communication Alain-
Claude bile-By-Nze, who retains his
position, and then former Interior
Minister Pacome Moubelet Boubeya
who is now the Foreign Minister.
The Secretary General of the
Presidency, Etienne Massard Kabinda
Makaga, also maintains his position in
addition to the portfolio of National
Defence Secretary which was a
position President Ali Bongo held for 10
years before succeeding his father in
The Minister of Defence will now report
to the Secretary General of the
Presidency, a new directive announced
by the Prime Minister during the press
conference on Sunday.