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Four ‘coup’ suspects fired from E. Guinea regime

President Theodoro Obiang

Malabo, Equatorial Guinea | AFP | Equatorial Guinea President Teodoro Obiang Nguema fired four senior regime officials, including his grandson, in recent weeks on suspicion of collusion with a foiled December “coup”, official sources said Thursday.

Ruben Clemente Nguema Engonga, president of the court of Bata city and son of the interior minister, and Martin Obiang Ondo, magistrate in the court of Malabo, were sacked Wednesday for “irregularities”, according to decrees read on state television.

Constantino Obiang Mba, a grandson of Obiang and director general of the state-owned telecommunications company, Getesa, was sacked on January 17, while the ambassador to Chad was removed from office on Tuesday after being arrested in late December.

The government suspects them all of being involved in the “coup d’etat” that Malabo claims to have foiled, according to sources.

Obiang, 75, seized power in the small former Spanish colony in 1979 and has faced a string of coup attempts during nearly four decades in office.

Critics accuse him of brutal repression of opponents as well as election fraud and corruption.

Equatorial Guinea has become one of sub-Saharan Africa’s biggest oil producers, but a large proportion of its 1.2 million population lives in poverty.

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