Gabon’s Transitional Premier Addresses Parliament, Emphasizing Patience Amidst Reform Efforts

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The transitional Prime Minister, Raymond Ndong Sima, delivered his general policy speech before the parliament, addressing concerns from lawmakers. Recognizing the collective eagerness for swift reforms in the country, the head of the government called for patience while outlining the ongoing and future projects.

Referring to a roadmap as a “vehicle,” Ndong Sima emphasized the need to check the wheels, fuel, and battery to avoid breakdowns. He urged patience, highlighting the reforms already initiated, diplomatic efforts to regain international standing, clearing arrears, dialogues with international institutions, and ongoing assessments for upcoming projects in healthcare and education.

“The Path to Trust”

The Prime Minister reiterated the transition’s timeline, including a national dialogue in April, a referendum by late 2024, and elections in August 2025. “We have no choice but to work together to foster a climate of trust,” declared Raymond Ndong Sima to the parliament.

Fourteen members intervened, expressing support for the government’s actions while conveying the concerns of the Gabonese people regarding the electoral code, unemployment, poverty, and the cost of living. Drawing on economic principles, Ndong Sima highlighted Gabon’s current challenges, such as reliance on foreign investments. However, he stressed that addressing political issues is paramount before making substantive choices. Otherwise, “it will be tough to make decisions. We must wait; it will come. Patience pays off,” he affirmed.

Control Mechanism

“We rely on you,” concluded the President of the Assembly, Jean-François Ndongou, announcing a mechanism to monitor adherence to the roadmap. While Raymond Ndong Sima enjoys the confidence of his peers, he does not have carte blanche, indicating a system of checks to ensure the roadmap’s implementation.

Soukaina Sghir

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