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Photo credit: AFP news agency

The wife of Gabon’s deposed president, Ali Bongo Ondimba, who has been under house arrest since the coup of late August over the suspected embezzlement of public funds, has been jailed.

Gabonese army officers seized power on August 30, annulling an election minutes after an announcement that President Bongo had won, which they said was not credible.

Mr Bongo, in power since 2009, had succeeded his father Omar Bongo, who ruled for 42 years.

Sylvia Bongo Ondimba Valentin, who is Franco-Gabonese, was imprisoned late on Wednesday.

The 60-year-old former First Lady was charged on September 28 with money laundering, forgery and falsification of records.

According to Gabonese media reports, she was taken into custody at a prison in the capital Libreville following a long hearing in front of a judge.

It was alleged that one of the couple’s sons has effectively pulled the strings in the oil-rich country for the past five years and has misused public money.

Their eldest son, Noureddin Bongo Valentin, has also been charged with corruption and embezzling public funds with several former cabinet members and two ex-ministers.

Sylvia Bongo had been isolated from her husband, and her French lawyers had complained of what they said “appears to be a hostage-taking.

Writing by Miracle BillyEditing by Julian Osamoto and Tony Okerafor

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