National Women’s Day is celebrated every 7 April in Mozambique. This holiday coincides with the UN observance of International Women’s Day on 8 April that is observed in many other countries.
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Women’s Day in Mozambique is dated on the death-day of Josina Machel, who was a leader of women’s rights, human rights, and of Mozambican independence. She turned down an opportunity to become a resident scholar at a Swiss university in order to stay and train women in Mozambique to fight in the war and to contribute in various other ways to winning independence for her country.
When diagnosed with liver cancer in 1970, she went to Moscow for a short period, but then returned to live out her remaining months in the service of her country and in promoting human and women’s rights. At the young age of only 25, she died on 7 April, 1971.
The National Organisation of Mozambican Women was founded in her honour and helped get her death-date as a national holiday.
Every National Women’s Day, people attend a variety of special conferences and other events in memory of Josina Machel. The contribution of other women and of all women to Mozambican society is also recognised on this day.