Equatorial Guinea’s President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, who holds the world record for living head of state without a monarch, was sworn into office on Thursday for a sixth seven-year term.
This last was re-elected on his 80th birthday on November 20, winning 94.9% of the vote and leading this small, oil-rich country in Central Africa.
His inauguration was held in Malabo in front of many guests, including officials from Congo, Burundi, Sao Tome and Principe, Zimbabwe and the Central African Republic.
“I am not the president of any tribe or ethnic group or of any particular creed. I was elected by all the people of Equatorial Guinea”. He said from a large seaside rostrum after being sworn in before judges of the Constitutional Court and members of the National Assembly and the Senate, whose party won all the seats in the Nov. 20 elections.
The head of state and his counterparts then took part in a parade of more than 5,000 military and police officers, according to the Ministry of Defense.
As in the last five elections, Obiang was re-elected with over 90% of the vote. This time, it went against the only non-banned opposition candidate and another candidate from a movement previously allied with the president’s party.
In 1979 he came to power in a coup in a country that had been independent of Spain since 1968. His regime is regularly accused by international NGOs and Western capitals of suppressing all dissent and violating human rights and has been accused of endemic corruption.
According to the World Bank, it is the third-largest oil producer in Equatorial Guinea and the third-richest country in sub-Saharan Africa in terms of PIB per capita in 2021.