Gabon’s Foreign Minister Michael Moussa Adamo died on Friday after suffering a heart attack while waiting to go into a cabinet meeting, the government and a presidential source said.
Moussa Adamo, 62, a long-standing ally of President Ali Bongo Ondimba, suffered a heart attack and died “despite efforts by specialists” to revive him, the government said in a brief statement.
He “sat down in the waiting room” just before the start of the cabinet meeting “in the presence of some of his government colleagues and began to feel unwell”, a source close to the presidential palace told AFP.
He was taken to a military hospital while unconscious but died just after midday (1100 GMT), the source who spoke on condition of anonymity said.
Reacting to his death, the president described Moussa Adamo on Twitter as “a great diplomat, a true statesman”.
“To me, he was firstly a friend, loyal and faithful, on whom I have always been able to count on. It’s a huge loss for Gabon,” he added.
Moussa Adamo was born in the northeastern town of Makokou in 1961 and started out as a presenter on national television.
In 2000, he was made chief of staff for the defence minister, who at the time was Bongo.
When Bongo was elected president on the death of his father Omar Bongo Ondimba in 2009, Moussa Adamo served as his special advisor.
After a decade as Gabon’s ambassador to the United States until 2020, he became, first, defence minister and then foreign minister in March last year.