The Bongo family has held power in Gabon for over 55 years, with Omar Bongo ruling for more than 41 years and his son Ali succeeding him in 2009.

Omar Bongo was a key figure in "Françafrique," a system of political ties between France and its former African colonies. Ali Bongo distanced himself from this influence.

Nine of Omar Bongo's children, including Ali, are under investigation by French authorities for alleged embezzlement of Gabonese public funds used to purchase real estate in France.

Gabon's economy relies heavily on oil, timber, and manganese, making it one of Africa's wealthiest countries in terms of GDP per capita. Oil constitutes a significant portion of its GDP and exports.

Gabon's large territory (88% covered by forests) makes it a net carbon absorber. The country's efforts to preserve its rainforest contribute to net zero emissions initiatives.

Gabon boasts diverse ecosystems, housing unique species like forest elephants, gorillas, and pangolins. It has high urbanization rates, with over 80% of the population residing in cities.

The psychotropic iboga plant is used in Gabon's traditional "bwiti" ceremonies. It gained attention for its anti-addictive properties due to ibogaine, one of its active compounds.

Gabon is concerned about the illegal harvesting of iboga for medicinal purposes like treating addiction and PTSD. It has implemented new regulations to manage its trade.

The internationally acclaimed footballer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang hails from Gabon and has played for several renowned football clubs, including Borussia Dortmund and Arsenal.

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