Singapore’s national holiday is held every year on 9 August. You will find in this article the many celebrations and anecdotes to know to make the most of this day.
The national holiday commemorates the independence of the city-state on 9 August 1965 after almost a century of British control. As early as 1958, the state of Singapore was declared by the British Parliament and the first elections were held in 1959. Lee Kuan Yew was then elected Prime Minister. Upon his election, the party proposes to merge Singapore with Malaysia. The country joined the Malaysian federation in 1963. Following bloody riots and political disagreements, the federation’s parliament voted unanimously on August 9, 1965, an amendment to the Constitution giving Singapore its independence, to the great displeasure of Lee Kwan Yew who was a strong supporter of the merge between Singapore and Malaysia.
The national holiday has 2 major events: The parade and the fireworks.
Many celebrations take place on August 9 but the most important is the Marina Bay floating platform parade. This parade involves over 2000 people who train more than 200 hours to prepare the ceremony.
Every year, a song is created especially for the national day, this year it is We Are Singapore:
The highlight of the ceremony is the fireworks display which starts between 8.15pm and 8.30pm. The fireworks being launched from the floating platform at Marina Bay, many points make it possible to observe it, here is a map of recommended places:
To celebrate this important day in Singaporean culture, we found some fun facts for you:
Fun Fact 1
The lyrics of Singapore’s national anthem, Majulah Singapura, are written in tiny letters on the $1,000 notes.
However, these bills aren’t the ones with the highest value. Singapore has tickets of up to $10,000! However, the production of these notes was stopped in 2014 to fight against money laundering.
Fun fact 2
The “Pledge Moment”, which takes place exactly at 8.22pm on August 9th of each year, is an amazing tradition of the national holiday. All Singaporeans are called upon to say aloud the “Singapore promise” as it is practiced for years and years of school and university exercises, at this very moment. No matter where and in what situation.
We, the citizens of Singapore,
pledge ourselves as one united people,
regardless of race, language or religion,
to build a democratic society
based on justice and equality
so as to achieve happiness, prosperity
and progress for our nation.
If you are celebrating the national holiday from your balcony, with a glass in your hand, don’t forget to prepare your Merlion ice cubes.