Friday, January 4, 2013

Remembering January 4 in Angola

Luanda — The Angolan people are celebrating on Friday, January 04, the Colonial Repression Martyrs' Day, with political, cultural and sports activities.
The date is of extreme importance in the context of the struggle for national liberation against colonialism, since it marked the start of an uprising in Baixa do Cassanje against the Portuguese colonial occupation of about 500 years (1482-1975), with devastating human and material consequences.
The Baixa de Casanje revolt is considered the first battle of the Angolan War of Independence and the Portuguese Colonial War.  The uprising began on February 3, 1961 in the region of Baixa do Cassanje, district of Malanje, Portuguese Angola. By February 4, the Portuguese authorities had successfully suppressed the revolt.
On January 3, agricultural workers employed by Cotonang, a Portuguese-Belgium cotton plantation company, staged a protest to force the company to improve their working conditions. The protest, which later became known as the Baixa de Cassanje revolt, was led by two previously unknown Angolans, António Mariano and Kulu-Xingu. During the protest, the Angolan workers burned their identification cards and physically attacked Portuguese traders on the company premises. The protest led to a general uprising, to which Portuguese authorities responded with an air raid on twenty villages in the area, killing large numbers of Angolan villagers. 
After independence from Portugal in 1975, the Angolan government designated February 4 a national holiday, "Colonial Repression Martyrs Day," in 1996 in remembrance of the attack. To the Angolan people, this date continues to inspire different generations of Angolan children in their actions in defence of liberty and well-being. (

1 comment:

Elia Sangunji said...

Hi, I like your passion for missionary work in Angola. I am missionary too, been to Tanzania, Zambia, Mozambique, Swaziland,Botswana, Angola and currently living in Namibia. Would love to be in touch. my site