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Gabon’s President Omar Bongo Dies

Africa’s longest serving President, Omar Bongo of Gabon dies from a heart attack at age 73.

The death of the 73-year-old president, who was Africa’s longest-serving leader, was announced on Monday. The government said Mr Bongo, who had led Gabon since 1967, had died of a heart attack. It emerged in May the president was being treated in a Barcelona clinic, amid unconfirmed reports he had cancer.

On Thursday, June 18th the late president’s body will arrive back in Gabon where it will lie in state at the presidential palace in the capital. He will be buried at Franceville in the Bateke region of his birth in south-east Gabon on June 18th.

The speaker of the senate in Gabon has been sworn in as the country’s interim head of state, following the recent death of President Omar Bongo. Under the constitution, Rose Francine Rogombe, an ally of Mr Bongo, must organise elections within 45 days.

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