This Video Does Not Show Gabonese Senate President Attempting to Flee the Country With Millions of CFA Francs

By Peris Gachahi

A Facebook post with a video, purportedly of Gabon’s Senate president attempting to flee the country with millions of money stashed in suitcases, is FALSE.

The post reads in part: “GABON COUP: Gabon Senate President Accosted In Attempt To Flee The Country With Millions Of CFA”.

A narrator in the background describing the purported arrest says in part: “Gabon is ready to restore their country.”

The military seized power in Gabon on 30 August 2023 and put President Ali Bongo under house arrest. General Brice Oligui Nguema was named the transitional leader. The coup happened hours after the country’s electoral body declared Bongo the winner of the 26 August 2023 general election.

A Google reverse image search established that the video in question pre-dates the coup in the oil-rich African country.

The video was featured in a French article dated 18 September 2022 with a headline translating to; “Gabon: opponent Guy Nzouba-Ndama arrested with more than a billion CFA francs in his suitcases”.

According to the article, the former president of the Gabonese National Assembly was arrested on his return from the Republic of Congo “carrying three suitcases filled with CFA francs” whose “total sum would represent nearly two million euros.”

The arrest was reported by other Gabonese media outlets.

Contrary to the claim under investigation, the current president of the Gabonese Senate is Lucie Milebou-Aubusson– and there are no reports from credible sources of her trying to flee the country.

PesaCheck has looked into a Facebook post with a video, purportedly of the Gabonese Senate president attempting to flee the country with millions of CFA francs stashed in suitcases and finds it to be FALSE.

This fact check was published by Piga Firimbi with support from Code for Africa’s PesaCheck and African Fact-Checking Alliance.

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