Rwandan Independence Day 2019

Rwandan National Holidays Public Holiday in Rwanda

Independence Day is a public holiday in Rwanda on 1 July. It commemorates independence from Belgium on 1 July 1962.

When is Rwandan Independence Day?

How long until Independence Day?
This holiday next takes place in 40 Days.
Dates of Independence Day
Year Weekday Date
2020 Wednesday
2019 Monday
2018 Monday
2018 Sunday
2017 Monday
1 Day
Celebrates independence from Belgium in 1962

Independence Day is a public holiday in Rwanda on 1 July.

This is Rwanda's National Day and commemorates independence from Belgium on 1 July 1962.

History of Rwandan Independence Day

Rwanda is a landlocked region in central Africa. It became part of the colony of German East Africa in 1884.

After Germany's defeat in the First World War, control of the western part of German East Africa was ceded to Belgium under the Treaty of Versailles in 1919.

In October 1924, Ruanda-Urundi, which consisted of modern-day Rwanda and Burundi, became a Belgian League of Nations mandate territory.

Tension rose between the two main ethnic groups in the country, the Tutsi and the Hutu. This led to the Rwandan Revolution in 1959. This resulted in Rwanda changing from a Belgian colony with a Tutsi Monarchy to a Hutu-controlled republic, after a referendum in 1961 abolishing the monarchy.

Following elections in which the Hutu gained overall control, Rwanda was declared an autonomous republic in 1961 and gained its independence on 1 July 1962.

Tensions between the Tutsi and the Hutu continued for several decades, erupting most notoriously in the 1994 genocide.

Despite commemorating the country's independence, there are no official ceremonies on that day.  Independence Day is closely followed by Liberation Day, which marks the defeat of the genocidal regime by the RPF in 1994 and is a seen as a more appropriate day for celebration.

Translate this page