Parliamentary Chamber: Assemblée nationale


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  Assemblée nationale

Dates of elections / renewal (from/to):

  15 December 1996
29 December 1996

Purpose of elections:

  Elections were held for all the seats in Parliament following extension of its term to ensure adequate preparation of the poll. General elections had previously been held in September/October 1990.

Background and outcome of elections:

  The five-year term of the National Assembly elected in September/October 1990 was extended by six months by referendum until May 1996. On the 20th of that month, Parliament stopped sitting.

The polling dates were set and reset several times for November/December 1996 by the National Electoral Commission, the successive postponements caused by key organisational problems such as the need to revise electoral registers and to issue fresh voting cards. Polling finally took place within the framework of the democratic reforms (including adoption of a new Electoral Code) provided for by the Paris Accord of September 1994 between the Government and the opposition. This agreement followed the violent aftermath of the re-election of President of the Republic Omar Bongo in December 1993.

The election campaign lasted two weeks. In the first round of voting on 15 December, the ruling Gabonese Democratic Party (PDG) - the sole legal party until 1990 - won 47 of the 56 seats filled. Subsequently, it secured 38 more to retain its absolute parliamentary majority with a total of 85 seats out of 120. On the other hand, the main opposition National Rally of Woodcutters (RNB), led by Father Paul Mba Abessole, failed to repeat its earlier success over the PDG in local elections and especially the capital Libreville, capturing only 7 seats. In this context, the Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Paulin Obame-Nguema continued in office.


Round no 1: Distribution of seats  
Political Group Total
Gabonese Democratic Party (PGP) 85
Gabonese Progress Party (PGP) 10
National Rally of Woodcutters (RNB) 7
Liberal Reformers Circle (CLR) 2
Gabonese Socialist Union (USG) 2
Independents 7
Others 7

Distribution of seats according to sex:  
Men: 114
Women: 6

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Copyright © 1996 Inter-Parliamentary Union