In West Africa, Gabon has been celebrating the 17th anniversary of its independence from France.?
SV PAN President Bongo reviewing military vehicles in parade (2 shots)
GV Crowd watching
SV Troops and military vehicles moving past in parade (3 shots)
SV President Bongo watching
SV Crowd watching as troops march past (3 shots)
SV President Bongo (centre) talking to government official
GV Guests watching parade
GV Marching girls in parade (2 shots)
SV President Bongo walking away from parade ground
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Background: In West Africa, Gabon has been celebrating the 17th anniversary of its independence from France. In an anniversary day message, President Albert-Bernard Bongo said he was determined to stamp out corruption in public life.
SYNOPSIS: Forty-one-year old President Bongo presided over the independence day parade through the capital of Libreville. He's been in power for 10 years, and at the time he took over the presidency he had only been in politics for six years after leaving the Air Force. Since then he's concentrated on the rapid development of Gabon.
In his message President Bongo condemned tribalism, regionalism, the abuse of power, favouritism and fraud. He also announced that he would set up an audit court to tackle corruption. In 1975, government sources in the United States alleged that President Bongo had received payment from an oil company so that it could carry on doing business in Gabon. The country's vice-president was also alleged to have received money from the same company.
President Bongo also said in his message that investment in Gabon should be channelled more selectively so that development would reach every level of the population. After two years of serious recession, industry was beginning to recover. Oil production was beginning to recover. Oil production had stabilised and sales of uranium had risen.