In the early hours of August 30, a group of senior Gabonese military officers appeared on Gabon’s national television, stating that they had taken power, shortly following the state election body’s announcement that President Ali Bongo Odinmba had won a third term.
The officers claimed to represent all Gabonese security and defense forces, announcing the nullification of the election results and the closing of all borders until further notice.
“On behalf of the Gabonese people and guarantor of the protection of institutions, the Committee for the Transition and Restoration of Institutions (CTRI) has decided to defend peace by putting an end to the regime in place,” stated a military officer on Gabon24 news channel.
During this national broadcast, the military officers stated that all the institutions of the republic, including the government, the Senate, the National Assembly, the Constitutional Court, the Economic and Social and Environmental Council, and the Elections Council of Gabon had dissolved, urging Gabonese nationals and diaspora and neighboring countries to keep their calm.
It was reported that loud gunshots were heard in the Gabonese capital Libreville, as neither the Gabonese government nor President Bongo Odinmba have made any comments.
On the same day, Gabon’s election body reported that President Bongo Odinmba had won the presidential election with 64.27% of the vote, following a general election marred by delays and deemed fraudulent by the opposition.
Similar to Gabon, the regime of Nigerien President Mohamed Bazoum was overthrown by the military on July 26, as announced in a statement by soldiers on national television, on behalf of a National Council for the Safeguard of the Homeland (CNSP), the removal of President Bazoum.