Gabon’s President Ali Bongo Ondimba appointed Rose Christiane Ossouka Raponda as the oil-rich central African nation’s first female vice president months before elections.
Ossouka Raponda, who became the country’s first woman prime minister in 2020, was named to the position that had been vacant since 2019.
Former Defence Minister, Ossouka Raponda, 59, who had been appointed premier in July 2020 after her predecessor stepped down, will now “assist” the head of state though the position does not allow for an interim role as president.
Another former minister, Alain-Claude Bilie- By-Nze, will replace Ossouka Raponda and form a new government, Bongo’s secretary-general, Jean-Yves Teale, said in a video statement posted on the presidency’s Twitter account.
As prime minister, Ossouka Raponda had to navigate a delicate political scene after a coup attempt in 2019, while Bongo was on prolonged medical leave following a stroke.
The new vice president has had a steady political rise in Gabon, which has been ruled by the same family for more than five decades.
She was named budget minister in 2012 before being elected mayor of the capital, Libreville, in 2014, becoming the first woman to hold that position since 1956. She is an economist by training who graduated from the Gabonese Institute of Economy and Finance, specialising in public finance.
Source: www.bloomberg.com / ghanaiantimes.com