Gabon’s President Ali Bongo Ondimba on Monday appointed Alain-Claude Bilie-By-Nze as the new prime minister, tasking him to form a new government in the oil-rich republic.
A presidential decree said outgoing premier Rose Christiane Ossouka Raponda, 59, will now serve as vice president, whose role is to “assist” the head of state though it allows for no interim role as president.
A former defense minister and former mayor of the capital Libreville, she became prime minister in July 2020 and was the first woman to lead a Gabonese government.
Bilie-By-Nze, 55, is a close ally of the president and has held several ministerial jobs since 2006.
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Later, on Monday he announced a government composed of forty-five ministers with no reshuffles in the key positions.
The decree listed no reason for the changes, which come ahead of presidential and legislative elections in mid-2023.
President Ondimba in 2009 took over from his father Omar Bongo Ondimba, the central African country’s ruler for 41 years, and is widely expected to run for re-election.
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