Gabonese opposition candidate Jean Ping greets supporters gathered at a rally in Libreville on the last day of the presidential election campaign on Aug. 26, 2016. / AFP / MARCO LONGARI
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The people of Gabon vote Saturday to decide whether President Ali Bongo will remain in office or be unseated by a career diplomat and close associate of his late father, who ran the country for 41 years.Bongo, 57, and ex-African Union Commission chief Jean Ping, 73, who both worked under Omar Bongo until he died in 2009, are seen as the only credible candidates among a field of 10 .In an overt jibe towards Ping's long association with his father, Bongo has also stressed the need to break with the bad old days of disappearing public funds and dodgy management of oil revenues.Ping and Bongo go back a long way, having worked for years together under Bongo senior, who was responsible for getting Ping his job as chairman of the AU Commission.
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