Léon M'ba

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Gabriel Léon M'ba
Léon M'ba in 1964
1st President of Gabon
In office
February 12, 1961 – November 27, 1967
Preceded byNone (position first established)
Succeeded byOmar Bongo
Prime Minister of Gabon
In office
27 February 1959 – 21 February 1961
Preceded byNone (position first established)
Succeeded byNone (position abolished)
Personal details
Born(1902-02-09)February 9, 1902
Libreville, Gabon
DiedNovember 27, 1967(1967-11-27) (aged 65)
Paris, France
Political partyComité Mixte Gabonais, Bloc Démocratique Gabonais

Gabriel Léon M'ba (February 9, 1902 in Libreville - November 28, 1967 in Paris) was the first President of Gabon (1960 - 1967). The surname is also written 'M'Ba' and 'Mba'.

He was a member of the Fang people ethnic group. He was prime minister from May 21, 1957 to February 21, 1961 and became president upon independence from France on August 17, 1960. He was briefly toppled by a military coup d'etat in February 1964, and Jean-Hilaire Aubame was installed as president, but was restored within days through French intervention.

M'ba was reelected in March 1967, but died in November of that year and was succeeded by his vice president, Albert-Bernard Bongo (now Omar Bongo Ondimba).

Gabon's main airport, the Leon M'ba International Airport, is named for him. On November 27, 2007, President Bongo Ondimba attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony for a newly built Mausoleum for M'ba in Libreville.

Preceded by
President of Gabon
Succeeded by
Omar Bongo Ondimba