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The National Assembly ultimately voted extraconstitutionally to empower then-Vice President Goodluck Jonathan to serve as acting president for Nigeria.

The health and undisclosed illness of late Guinean strongman Lansana Conte also were topics of national debate for years before his 2008 death. Rumors of his death surfaced periodically, including in 2003, when he was forced to go on TV to deny them.

The week before he died, the editor of a local paper was arrested after publishing a picture of the frail leader struggling to stand up. A spokesman for the president went on TV to assure the nation that Conte was not ill. The newspaper was ordered to print a photograph of Conte showing him in good health.