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August 3 is commemorated in the Republic of Nigermarker as Independence Day, marking the nation's independence from France in 1960. Since 1975, it is also Arbor Day, as trees are planted acoss the nation to aid the fight against desertification.

Importance of date

August 3 1960 is the date of formal, complete independence from Francemarker, while December 18 1958 marks the founding of the Republic and creation of the Presidency of the Republic of Niger, following the constitutional changes of the French Fifth Republic, and the elections of 4 December 1958 held across The French Colonial possessions. Nigeriens consider that date to be the founding of their national institutions. Between December 18 1958 and August 3 1960, Niger remained a semi-autonomous Republic with in the French Community. At the beginning of 1960 a revision of the French Community allowed membership of independent states, and on 28 July the Nigerien Legislative Assembly became the Nigerien National Assembly: Independence was declared on 3 August 1960.


Since 1960, the 3rd has been a national festival. In 1975, the government began celebrating Independence Day, in part, through the coordinated mass planting of trees in order to fight desertification. The celebrations are also known as the FĂȘte de l'Arbre.

The 3rd is celebrated in Niger with official festivals and appearances of political leaders, an official broadcast by the President as well as the tradition (since 1975) that every Nigerien plant a tree. It is a Public Holiday, in which government offices and many businesses close.

See also


  • James Decalo. Historical Dictionary of Niger. Scarecrow Press/ Metuchen. NJ - London (1979) ISBN 0810812290
  • Finn Fuglestad. A History of Niger: 1850-1960. Cambridge University Press (1983) ISBN 0521252687

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