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Gabon - new government

Women in two important posts in slimline Gabon cabinet

Article published on the 2009-10-18 Latest update 2009-10-19 06:59 TU

Angélique Ngoma(Photo: AFP)

Angélique Ngoma
(Photo: AFP)

Two women have been appointed to important posts in Gabon's new government, which was named Saturday, two months after the controversial election of Ali Bongo Ondimba as President.

Prime Minister Paul Biyoghe Mba named a slimmed-down cabinet, cutting the number of ministers from 44 to 30.

For the first time, two women hold important posts. Angélique Ngoma moved from the Family Ministry to Defence and Anicette Nang Ovika becomes Justice Minster, the government's number two post.

Mba, who was reappointed Friday after Ali Bongo Ondimba's election was confirmed, has named 18 new ministers but kept several key members of the previous administration in their posts.

Paul Toungui remains at the head of the Foreign Ministry, Jean-François Ndongou at the Interior Ministry, Julien Ngoghe Bekale at Mining, Oil and Hydrocarbons and Blaise Louembe as Budget Minister.

The smaller number of ministers "is aimed primarily at efficiency", Mba said when announcing his line-up.

The election of Ali Bongo Ondimba, who is the son of the late Omar Bongo, led to violence in several cities and his rivals demanded a recount.

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