Is Gabon’s president Ali Bongo an Igbo man?

President Ali Bongo
President Ali Bongo

There is a picture of about 10 malnourished African children currently circulating on social media. The caption on the photo alleges that one of the children, is current Gabonese president, who it is rumored was adopted by his late father who also happens to be the former president of the country.

Ali Bongo Ondimba, 56 is the current president of Gabon. He became the President of the country in 2009 after his father Omar Bongo died. During his father’s reign as the president, he was a Minister of Foreign Affairs, a Deputy Representative of Bongoville in the National Assembly and finally a Minister of Defence.

While the picture is likely an urban myth with no merit, there has been a lot controversy surrounding the nationality of the president of Gabon. Politicians in his country had earlier requested that the president present a DNA test, to prove that he is truly the son of the late president of the country. However, the president has refused to do the test. This allegation came up after a French essayist and a specialist on Gabon, Pierre Pean wrote in his book titled “New African Affairs” that the president of Gabon is from a Nigerian origin.

President-of-GabonThe essayist claims that the president’s father, Former president Omar Bongo brought Ali Bongo from Biafra during the Nigerian civil war. People believe this to be true because the former president was a strong supporter of Biafra during the Nigerian civil war. It is reported that he organised the airlift of several children from Biafra during the civil war and gave them up for adoption.


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