National Hero Day (Angola)

National Hero Day is a public holiday in Angola, and it is observed on September 17 each year. The holiday commemorates the birthday of the national hero Agostinho Neto, the first President of Angola.

Neto was born on September 17, 1922 in Bengo Province, Angola. He went to Portugal and studied medicine at the University of Coimbra and Lisbon, where he started his political life as a nationalist. However, his anti-colonial agitation caused the attention of the Portuguese Police and he was arrested in 1951. In the following years, he was arrested several times because of his activities against colonial rule.

In 1959, he returned to Angola and started his medical practices. In 1960, he was arrested again because he campaigned against the Portuguese colonial rule in Angola. His patients and supporters marched for his release, but the Portuguese soldiers stopped and shot at them. 30 were killed and over 200 were injured. Portugal's government first exiled Neto to Cape Verde, then he was sent to jail in Lisbon. Because of the international pressure on Portugal's government, he was put under house arrest, and he escaped after.

While he was in exile, he joined the Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) and became the leader of the party. MPLA is one of the three principal independence movements in Angola and the other two are the National Front for the Liberation of Angola (FNLA), and the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA).

On November 11, 1975, MPLA seized Luanda, the capital of Angola, and declared independence from the Portuguese. Agostinho Neto became the first President of Angola.

On September 10, 1979, Agostinho Neto died of cancer in Moscow, USSR, where he went for treatment.

The following is the list of National Hero Day in Angola from 2022 to 2026.

National Hero DaySep 17, 2022Saturday
National Hero DaySep 17, 2023Sunday
National Hero DaySep 17, 2024Tuesday
National Hero DaySep 17, 2025Wednesday
National Hero DaySep 17, 2026Thursday

Please check more public holidays in Angola:

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