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Gabon: Property Of Jean Ping Seized For A Defamation Case

This Friday a bailiff and police officers went to the home of the opponent Jean Ping to inform him of the seizure of his property in a case dating from 2015.

“A judicial officer has come to serve on Mr. Ping the acts of the procedure of seizure real estate and movable” of his residence in Libreville and a dozen cars, indicated one of its lawyers to the AFP . According to several witnesses, at least four police trucks and hooded policemen were outside the home of Mr. Jean Ping,

A month has been given to Mr. Ping, as grace period before his property is sold at auction, said lawyer Jean-Rémy Batsantsa.

“The presence of security forces is not surprising, but what is surprising is their number and their weaponry,” accused Master Eric Iga Iga, another lawyer for the opponent.

Mr Ping responded to the press, denouncing a “political instrumentalisation” of justice.

Contacted by AFP , a judicial source close to the investigation denied these accusations, speaking of “private affair”.

The visit of the usher to Jean Ping follows the condemnation in April 2015 of Mr. Ping to pay 600 million  FCFA  (914,692 euros) in damages to Hervé Patrick Opiangah, councilor of the presidency, for “defamation”.

On January 12, 2015, at least 300 youths vandalized Mr. Ping’s residence, which accused Opiangah of being a ” henchman ” for Ali Bongo Ondimba and the attack.

Jean Ping’s bank accounts were frozen in November 2015 in the same case.

The opponent then stood as a candidate for the presidential election in August, marked by unprecedented post-election violence in the country, which resulted in the re-election of outgoing President Ali Bongo (elected in 2009), son and successor of ‘Omar Bongo, President of Gabon between 1967 and 2009.

More than a year later, Jean Ping still challenges the results of the election and claims to be “elected president” of Gabon. Some of its supporters joined the new government formed at the end of August 2017.

Former companion of Pascaline Bongo, daughter of Omar Bongo, Mr. Ping was several times minister under Omar Bongo before becoming president of 2008 to 2012 of the Commission of the African Union (AU).

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