Thursday, 19 July 2012

Independence Celebrations

Thursday the 12th of July was the 33rd National Independence Day for Kiribati. The whole nation celebrates by taking the whole week off. Every day is declared a public holiday - bizarre as EVERYTHING shuts down. All services and many independent businesses too.

On Thursday we attended the Independence Parade. This day marked the 33rd anniversary of the nations independence from Great Britain. They ceased being known as the Gilbert Islands and became the independent nation of Kiribati.

The atmosphere was amazing, the police band, the police corp, the Maritime Training College and all the secondary, primary and pre-schools had a contingent marching. It was a mass of colourful movement accompanied by marching music. The president gave his Independence Day speech, the Australian and New Zealand High Commissioners arrived to stand in front of the parade while individual anthems were played.

Our new High Commissioner George Fraser and wife Denise while the Australian anthem is played

JJ & Darren looking all official

The amazingly skilled formation marching of the combined Maritime Training College students and Kiribati police, even JJ was impressed!!

Some of the adorable kids marching for their school!! The whole parade and kaleidoscope of colours was too much to capture on photo, but it was truly an amazing spectacle.

That evening we attended the 33rd Independence dinner hosted by the president and his wife at the state Maneaba. It was a really lovely night and the winner of the men's choir and traditional dance competitions performed. These two groups will now become the nation dance and choir troupes for the year.

The new national dance troupe was AMAZING!!!!

1 comment:

  1. The parade looks wonderful and the school children would be so proud to be marching. Did you take Jack and Sam to watch? I bet the islanders dancing wasn't as good as our private show!!