Declaration of Independence
Equatorial Guinea celebrates its Independence Day on 12 October. After seeking independence from Spain in 1968, Francisco Macias Nguema was declared as the first President of Equatorial Guinea, and the current president is Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo.
The Pygmies were the first to inhabit the mainland. The Bubi and Fang migrated in the 17th century and to the main island of Bioko in the nineteenth century. In the eighteenth century, the Portuguese conceded land to the Spanish, which included Equatorial Guinea. From 1827-1844, Britain maintained a strict administration on Fernando Po, however it was then reclaimed by Spain.
Here we have the translated version of the national anthem of Equatorial Guinea:
Let us tread the paths
Of our great happiness.
In brotherhood, undivided,
Let us sing for freedom!
Behind us are two centuries
Of colonial domination.
In brotherly unity, without discrimination,
Let us sing for freedom!
Let us shout: Long live Guinea!
Let us defend our freedom.
Always singing of our free Guinea,
Let us keep united.
(repeat the previous four lines)
Let us keep our nation independent.
Equatorial Guinea is home to a rich and varied culture; a significant number of migrations were made from the 18th century onwards and have resulted in cultural diversity, which is well reflected through the country’s arts, music, and language.
As mentioned earlier, Equatorial Guinea attained independence in 1968, but even then it retains its European influence, which is appropriately portrayed in its architecture and language.
Religion too plays a viable part in national life, with about 93% of its population being Christian, and the majority of them practicing Roman Catholics. But then, native languages, as well as beliefs, still have a part in modern life, specifically for ethnic groups.
Some of the national bank holidays of Equatorial Guinea include:
- President’s Birthday (5 June)
- Freedom Day (3 August)
- Day of the Constitutional Chart (15 August)
- Independence Day (12 October)
Independence Day in Equatorial Guinea is celebrated in the like manner as we do in the United States. On this day, you will find that the public facilities will be closed and most of the celebrations will be organized to show respect for this day.
For the very first time; the people of Equatorial Guinea celebrated their 42nd Independence Day on the small island of Annobon. First Lady Constancia Mangue de Obiang and President Obiang Nguema Mbasogo participated with thousands of Equatoguineans, business leaders, diplomats, government officials, and international organizations. The opening ceremony of Independence Day took place at San Antonio de Pale. Following speeches from different government officials as well as business leaders, President Obiang extended congratulation to the entire nation on the event of Independence Day.
Some of the important facts associated with Equatorial Guinea are as follows:
- Equatorial Guinea, formerly known as Spanish Guinea, comprises Río Muni (26,117 sq km), on the West African coast, and various islands in the Gulf of Guinea.
- President Francisco Macías Nguema is referred to as the father of Independence
- While Nguema calls himself a “Unique Miracle,” in reality he is believed to be one of the worst despots in African history
- In 1997, Equatorial Guinea experienced a boom in the economic growth of 71.2%
- From 2002 to 2005, the GDP reached from $1.27 billion to $25.69 billion.
- In the year 2004, nearly 70 mercenaries made an attempt to throw Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, the authoritarian President.