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President's Day in Botswana – July 17, 2023

President’s Day in Botswana is observed every third Monday of July. This year, it falls on July 17. It is one of the most important national holidays in the country. It was first celebrated as a two-day holiday but was later changed to a single day. Today, this is a significant holiday in Botswana, as it is one of the few countries that dedicate a national holiday to the head of state. This is also a celebration of the rich culture of Botswana and its history.

History of President's Day in Botswana

Botswana is one of the most unique countries in the world. Its rich culture and unique history distinguish it and give the celebration of President’s Day special significance. The earliest societies of modern Botswana are believed to have originated around 300 A.D. Bantu-speaking people crossed into the area around modern-day South Africa as part of the Bantu expansion. Around the year 1000 A.D., the Bantu civilization had established itself over a broad territory.

The Bantu society continued to live in relative peace in modern-day Botswana until late in the 19th century when political tensions began to rise. At the period, tensions between the Shona people of Botswana and other South African tribes, as well as the Dutch immigrants, were rising. The British Empire began the colonization of Botswana in 1885. Botswana’s territorial integrity was a major concern during colonization, but it was eventually preserved when the British decided to postpone Botswana’s accession to the Union of South Africa.

In 1966, Botswana was granted independence. The administration was then moved to Gaborone, making it the country’s official capital. Constitutional reform was initiated the same year, and general elections were held. Seretse Kharma was the country’s first president. He was a leader in the independence struggle in the past. Seretse Kharma was re-elected and remained in office until his death in the early 1980s. Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi is Botswana’s current president — the fifth in the country’s history.

President's Day in Botswana timeline

1885
The British Colonize Botswana

Botswana is colonized by the British Empire.

1966
Botswana Declares Independence

Botswana declares its independence from the British, and Seretse Kharma is elected president.

1980
Seretse Khama Dies

The most beloved president of Botswana dies after serving several presidential terms.

2008
Ian Kharma Becomes President

Ian Kharma, son of Seretse Kharma, is elected president of Botswana.

President's Day in Botswana FAQs

What is Botswana most famous for?

Botswana is known for its beautiful natural landscapes, and being home to one of the best wildlife areas in the world.

What do people from Botswana call themselves?

A person from Botswana can be referred to as a ‘Motswana,’ the singular for Batswana.

Is Botswana a good country to live in?

Botswana may be a very cost-effective country to live in, especially if ex-pats budget well. Gaborone is cheaper than most of the 200 other cities mentioned in “Mercer’s Cost of Living Survey.” Its favorable exchange rate also draws visitors from the United States, the United Kingdom, and Europe.

How to Observe President's Day in Botswana

  1. Read about the country’s history

    Botswana’s history is one of the most fascinating in Africa. Its ancient history tells of a thriving community, which eventually suffered from colonialism. Its recent history is a reflection of how countries are built.

  2. Check out the art’s culture

    Celebrating a country’s national holidays is never complete without honoring its culture and tradition. From traditional arts to modern music, Botswana is home to an eclectic mix of music, dance, and visual arts. Make sure you check some of the locals’ best work.

  3. Understand the role of the Botswana President

    The holiday is set to honor the most important position in Botswana’s political process. Seretse Kharma may have set a shining example, but understanding the actions of the President is important to ensure a transparent democracy.

5 Interesting Facts About Botswana

  1. Pure nature

    Botswana is a reasonably sized country with almost 40% of its area covered by wilderness.

  2. Languages

    Although English is the country's official language, Botswana is home to more than 15 other languages.

  3. Sparse population

    Botswana has a population of two million inhabitants, making it the world's most sparsely populated country when compared to its size.

  4. Bird species

    Botswana is one of the most genetically diverse regions in the world and is home to more than 400 bird species.

  5. Oldest society

    Botswana is home to the world's oldest community — the San of Botswana— who are thought to be the world's first inhabitants.

Why President's Day in Botswana is Important

  1. Honors the leader of a nation

    President's Day is a significant celebration in Botswana since it commemorates the country's most influential political figure. The president is effectively the country's leader — a position that should be respected and constantly observed.

  2. Celebration of a country

    In Botswana, the President's prominence stems mostly from the crucial role they performed in liberating the country from colonialism and establishing its economy. After independence, Seretse Kharma became the most well-known individual in the country as the nation's builder.

  3. Unified communities

    Botswana is unique in that its president is highly regarded and adored. The unifying feature that unites disparate groups in Botswana is their love and dedication to their president, making this festival one of the most important in the country.

President's Day in Botswana dates

YearDateDay
2022July 18Monday
2023July 17Monday
2024July 15Monday
2025July 21Monday
2026July 20Monday

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