Ex-rebels dominate new Central Africa government

Prime Minister Nicolas Tiangaye has given former rebels key posts in a new government in the strife-prone Central African Republic, according to a decree read on national radio Thursday.

The government of 34 members includes nine ministers drawn from the rebel Seleka movement, which seized power in Bangui at the end of March, with seven posts for former opposition parties and two for supporters of ousted president Francois Bozize.

The other 16 jobs were given to members of civil society and other political parties, after President Michel Djotodia reappointed Tiangaye as government chief on Wednesday.

Djotodia, a top Seleka leader who initially proclaimed himself head of state but was then elected to the post by a transitional council on April 13, took the defence portfolio in the new team.

The transitional council also named Djotodia to oversee an 18-month period of political change that will lead to the holding of elections.

Among other Seleka members, Gontran Djono was put in charge of mining, Nourendine Adam was given the security portfolio, Mohamed Moussa Dhaffane was appointed to water and forests and Christophe Gazam Betty took the communications ministry.

Former opposition member Crepin Mboli Gonda became minister of infrastructure and remains government spokesman.

Under pressure from regional leaders in the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), who met in Chad in April, Tiangaye vowed that all political forces would be represented in his government to help in the political transition.