Gabonese Transitional President Visits Cameroon to Reestablish Ties

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Brice Clotaire Oligui Nguema, the current president of Gabon, is scheduled to visit Yaoundé, Cameroon on Wednesday, December 6, 2023. This visit has been highly anticipated since General Oligui Nguema took office at the Libreville Palace. Although he has previously visited all of his counterparts in the sub-region, he is now set to have a private meeting with President Paul Biya in Yaoundé on Wednesday afternoon.

Oligui Nguema’s plane is expected to touch down at 11 a.m. at the Nsimalen International Airport in Yaoundé. This marks his first visit to Yaoundé as the president of the transition and head of the Gabonese state, just over three months after seizing power in Libreville.

The question arises as to why it took this long for the general president, who, shortly after taking the oath, toured almost all the capitals in the sub-region. A source close to the Cameroonian government responded, stating that “everything comes in its own time.” Addressing speculation about strained relations between Yaoundé and Libreville since the August 30 coup that ended the Bongo dynasty, the same source emphasized the longstanding tradition of friendship between the two countries, with no rupture in their relations.

In Yaoundé, Oligui Nguema will have a highly anticipated one-on-one meeting with President Paul Biya at 3 p.m. Similar to his previous stops in Central Africa, he is likely to explain to his host the motivations behind the coup that brought him to power and seek to strengthen cooperation between the two countries. The Cameroonian side justifies this summit meeting by emphasizing the need to maintain “constructive dialogue” between Yaoundé and Libreville, as well as with all countries in the sub-region.

In anticipation of this visit, the Gabonese High Commissioner to Cameroon has called on the Gabonese community to mobilize and extend the warmest welcome to their president. Brice Oligui Clotaire Nguema will spend only a few hours on Cameroonian soil. Immediately after his audience with President Paul Biya, the transitional president and head of the Gabonese state will directly return to Libreville.

Soukaina Sghir

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