Gabonese Independence Day is celebrated every year on August 17. This day honors the country’s independence in 1960. It is a national holiday in Gabon and is celebrated in many ways, including parades, concerts, and fireworks.
The parades feature marching bands, floats, and traditional dancers. The concerts present a variety of music genres, from traditional Gabonese music to international pop music.
Gabonese Independence Day is an event for all Gabonese to come together and celebrate the sacrifices of the people who won freedom for the country. It is a day for all the Gabonese people to be proud of their heritage.
The Commonwealth Chambers of Commerce mention: “This holiday is widely celebrated throughout the country and the festivities usually last for two days. Celebrations include official speeches, parades, drum shows, traditional dances, and fireworks at La Place de Fetes. Friends and family gather to enjoy traditional foods like nyembwe, fufu and atanga with bread.
— Ministry of Foreign Affairs 🇸🇦 (@KSAmofaEN)
August 17, 2020
What is the history of Gabonese Independence Day?
The history of Gabon’s independence is quite long and complex. The French first landed in Gabon in the early 19th century. In 1839, Captain Édouard Bouët-Willaumez negotiated treaties with the heads of two Mpongwe clans, King Denis and King Louis, and in that agreement they agreed to end the slave trade and accepted French sovereignty over their lands. The French further expanded their control over the coast and in 1849 founded the city of Libreville.
In the late 19th century, the French began to explore the interior of Gabon. Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza’s expeditions between 1875 and 1885 established French authority on the upper Ogooué River and on the Loango coast. In 1910, Gabon became one of the four colonies of the federation of French Equatorial Africa.
Britannica mentions: “During the 1850s and 1860s, the French gradually extended their control along the adjacent coast and sent explorers inland. Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza’s expeditions between 1875 and 1885 established French authority in upper Ogooué, where Franceville was founded in 1880, and on the Loango coast.
“An enlarged Gabon was annexed to the French Congo in 1886 under Brazza as governor. In 1910, Gabon became one of the four colonies within the federation of French Equatorial Africa. Add.
The French occupation of Gabon provoked some resistance from the local population. However, the main opposition to French rule came from the pro-French but anti-colonialist elite that was created in the period between the two world wars.
This elite came mainly from the graduates of the boys’ schools of the Brothers of Saint Gabriel in Libreville and Lambaréné. During the French Fourth Republic (1946-58), Gabon became an overseas territory with its own assembly and representation in the French Parliament.
France also vastly expanded public investment in the economy, healthcare and education. In 1958, Gabon became an autonomous republic within the French Community. Cooperation agreements were subsequently signed with France, and as a result, Gabon gained its independence on August 17, 1960.
To conclude, Gabon’s Independence Day is a day of great importance for the Gabonese people. This day is an opportunity to celebrate your freedom and unity, reflect on the country’s past and look to the future.