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The Government and Political System in Gabon

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The enactment of Gabon’s constitution took place in 1991. The constitution contains provisions regarding bill of rights. Gabon has governmental advisory board and the National Council of Democracy body which both determine which rights deal with economic and social issues. Between 1990 and 1991 elections of multi-party legislative were held in spite of the fact that opposition parties were not yet declared legal.

From 1967 to June 2009, President Omar Bongo Ondimba held the power and the Interior Ministry of Gabon provide figures stating the fact that 79.1% of votes were in favor of President Bongo. Upon his death, Rose Francine Rogombé, the then president of the Senate of Gabon took over as interim president.

People of Gabon at age 21 can participate in voting. The Constitution of Gabon which was amended in 2003 by the President removed the given restrictions regarding the number of terms a president should serve. One of the powers of the President is to dissolve National Assembly. The President’s strong power also enables him to declare a state of siege, initiate referendums, make appointments and dismissals of prime minister and members of the cabinet, and delay legislation.

Ali Ben Bongo was elected President, the son of the former President. As expected from any Gabonese elections, the opposition parties questioned the results. Boycotts and accusations were made against the administration.

In 2007, Gabon’s cabinet officially abolished death penalty in the country and this was announced by the government’s spokesperson. In terms of comprehensive measure of African Governance by Ibrahim Index, Gabon ranked 21st out of 53 African countries.

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