JOHANNESBURG, January 7 – A military coup is currently underway in Gabon with a number of military officers seizing control of state radio and declaring their dissatisfaction with President Ali Bongo, who is recovering from a stroke in Morocco, news reports said on Monday.
Reports said it remained unclear if the military officers were backed by a larger force, but the military released a broadcast statement on Monday morning declaring their intention to form a “National Restoration Council” and expressing their disappointment in Bongo and doubts over his ability to carry out his responsibilities in office following a New Year address the president gave.
The statement was released after the soldiers stormed the national radio headquarters in the capital Libreville as the sound of gunfire echoed in the vicinity.
One soldier who identified himself as Lieutenant Kelly Ondo Obiang, according to BNO news site, urged fellow military personnel and citizens to arm themselves and occupy military bases, airports, and border crossings.
Bongo’s family has ruled the oil-rich country for over half a century. He assumed office in October 2009 over the stroke he suffered in October may have created a power vacuum.
– African News Agency (ANA)