Gabon’s top court has intervened in a crisis surrounding hospitalised President Ali Bongo, declaring to a storm of criticism that it had modified the constitution to address his “temporary incapacity”. Speculation about Bongo’s future has grown since the 59-year-old president was taken to hospital in the Saudi capital Riyadh on October 24. After initially saying Bongo had been admitted for “severe fatigue”, his office on Sunday admitted he had undergone surgery. It said his condition had “greatly improved” and he was “recovering most of his functions”, but gave no details about his illness or when he would return. The president of the Constitutional Court, Marie-Madeleine Mborantsuo, informed reporters late on Wednesday that the court had decided to modify the constitution in order to address the scenario of “temporary incapacity” by the head of state. It inserted text in the charter that said: “In the event of the temporary unavailability of the president … certain functions … may ...

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