In Zambia, Unity Day is a public holiday normally celebrated on the first Tuesday of July. Thus, it always falls on the day after Heroes’ Day, another Zambian patriotic holiday.
|2019||2 Jul||Tue||Unity Day|
|2020||7 Jul||Tue||Unity Day|
The purpose of Unity Day is to encourage national unity among the 70-plus ethnic groups that make up the Zambian people. There is no single dominant ethnic group in Zambia, but there are nine major groups that make up the majority of the population. And there is also much linguistic, cultural, and religious diversity as well.
The very first president of Zambia, Ken Kaunda, first spoke the quote that is used as the Unity Day slogan: “One Zambia; One Nation!”
As both Heroes’ Day and Unity Day are off-work days for Zambia’s people, they celebrate their national heritage and identity on two consecutive days every July.
On Unity Day, there are many government officials giving patriotic speeches, including one by the sitting president, who will urge the diverse people groups of Zambia to stand strong as one united nation. The president will remind them how the whole nation came together as one man to win the difficult struggle for independence from Britain and encourage them to continue in that spirit in the days and years ahead.