NIGERIA: Happy 60th Independence Anniversary (Pictures)
Happy Nigeria Independence Day! Today, Nigerians celebrate the proclamation of independence from British rule.
This year is extra special as it marks 60 years since the country declared independence. Independence Day is a big event, celebrated all over the world. However, it looks a lot different this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. But when did Nigeria become independent from Britain, and how is the day usually celebrated?
When did Nigeria become independent?
Just after midnight on October 1, 1960, in Lagos, Nigeria’s flag was officially holstered for the very first time.
A new constitution established a federal system with an elected prime minister and a President as a ceremonial head of state. Nigerians wear green and white on Independence day.
The occasion signified the sovereignty and unity of Nigeria’s 36 states and was marked with fireworks, dancing, and a state banquet.
Independence Day gives an opportunity for Nigerians to showcase their rich and varied culture. Nigeria is the most populated country in the entire continent of Africa, with 195.9 million citizens.
The country has over 520 languages, although it retains English as its official language. Traditional Nigerian meals such as jollof rice with plantain and egusi are eaten on Independence Day.
How is Nigeria Independence Day celebrated?
Nigeria Independence Day looks a lot different in 2020 than usual, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Governor of Lagos State has said that the planned parade and other activities that involve the gathering of more than 50 people in commemoration of Nigeria’s Independence are cancelled.
The Governor of Ogun State has also imposed a 10pm to 6am curfew on the day of Independence, directing the Police, military and all security agencies to enforce these measures.
The festivities begin with the President’s address to the people, which is broadcast on radio and television.
Usually, a parade by the armed forces then starts, and people line the streets wearing white and green – the colours of the Nigerian flag.
Then, the national cake is cut to commemorate the celebrations at the President’s villa (known as Aso Rock).
Afterwards, people gather to have large feasts where everyone brings a traditional dish. This typically includes jollof rice, egusi soup, and pounded yam.
In the evening, people end the day with a bang – by letting off fireworks.
See pictures below:
Credit: Metro News