Paul Bunduku Latha

Bunduku Latha Paul

Gabonese Minister of State in the Ministry of the Economy

Biographie de Bunduku Latha Paul

Paul Boundoukou-Latha (born 1952) is a Gabonese politician and diplomat. He was Gabon's Ambassador to the United States during the 1990s and was later its Ambassador to Germany. He was Minister-Delegate under the Deputy Prime Minister for the Environment from January 2009 to October 2009 and has been Minister-Delegate under the Minister of the Economy, Trade, Industry, and Tourism since October 2009. Following political studies in France at the University of Poitiers, Boundoukou-Latha graduated in 1979. Back in Gabon, he was placed in charge of the Europe Studies Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1983, and he was Director of International Organizations and Multilateral Cooperation from 1984 to 1986. Later, he was Gabon's Ambassador to Morocco from 1989 to 1993. Boundoukou-Latha was appointed as Ambassador to the United States on 23 June 1993 and presented his credentials on 3 September 1993; he served concurrently as Ambassador to Mexico.

Later, in December 2000, he was instead appointed as Ambassador to Germany; that was considered something of a demotion. He was recalled from Germany and replaced by Jean-Claude Bouyobart in May 2006. Boundoukou-Latha joined the Gabonese Union for Democracy and Development (UGDD), an opposition party founded by Zacharie Myboto in 2005, and held the post of UGDD Political Adviser. Myboto and Boundoukou-Latha are cousins. Later, Boundoukou-Latha accepted an appointment to the government, along with UGDD Secretary-General Sylvestre Ratanga, on 14 January 2009; he was named Minister-Delegate under the Deputy Prime Minister for the Environment, Sustainable Development, and the Protection of Nature, Georgette Koko.

He and Ratanga accepted their appointments without the approval of the UGDD, and they were immediately expelled from the party on 15 January. Deriding the appointments, the UGDD expressed doubt that Koko would give Boundoukou-Latha any meaningful responsibility. On 25 July 2009, following the death of President Omar Bongo in June 2009, Boundoukou-Latha announced his support for the candidate of the Gabonese Democratic Party (PDG), Ali Bongo, in the 30 August 2009 presidential election. Bongo won the election, and after taking office as President he moved Boundoukou-Latha to the position of Minister-Delegate under the Minister of the Economy, Trade, Industry, and Tourism on 17 October 2009. He was one of two ministers-delegate assigned to that ministry, sharing the responsibility with Françoise Assengone Obame. Boundoukou-Latha joined the PDG on 6 March 2010.

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