President Ali Bongo of Gabon has been taken into medical care after suffering from exhaustion during a trip to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, four days after he was hospitalised.
The President’s spokesman Ike Ngouoni in a statement said that the 59-year-old leader was in the Saudi capital for a flagship economic forum when he fell ill.
“The doctors who assessed him said he is suffering from severe fatigue due to extremely high levels of activity in recent months,” he said.
Bongo is feeling better and has been told to rest by his Doctors, Ngouoni added, while calling for “vigilance” against “fake news” following false reports of his death.
A Cameroon TV station had announced live on air on Saturday that the Gabon president had died, without providing any evidence, he added.
Bongo was scheduled to appear Wednesday on a panel at the Future Investment Initiative forum, but was absent during the discussion.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman visited him in Riyadh’s King Faisal hospital that evening, the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Thursday.
However, in a separate report, SPA said Bongo attended a speech by Prince Mohammed at the conference later Wednesday.
Bongo took over as President of the oil-rich equatorial African nation in 2009 after the death of his father Omar Bongo, who had ruled since 1967.
In 2016, Ali Bongo was re-elected by just a few thousand votes in a widely criticised controversial presidential election.
The country went to the polls this month for the first time since that vote, with the second round of legislative elections Saturday seeing Bongo’s party cruising towards victory.