Friday, October 31, 2008

Bolivia Declares November 3 Day In Lieu Public Holiday

Sources: Educación Radiofónica de Bolivia (ERBOL) and Bolivia public holidays ( Late last night, Bolivia's Minister of Labour declared Monday, November 3, 2008, as a one-off public holiday, due to the fact that November 2nd falls on a Sunday in 2008.

Although this announcement was expected (and we had published this date months ago), there is always a possibility that a new minister might decide to interpret differently the 3 somewhat contradictory decrees that, over the years, have tinkered with the November 1 and 2 public holidays.

India's Karnataka Makes Kannada Rajyotsava Public Holiday Mandatory Starting This Year

Sources: Times of India (Bangalore) and India public holidays ( The government of the India state of Karnatake (which includes Bangalore) has directed all establishments, public and private, in Karnataka to henceforth declare a holiday annually on November 1 on the occasion of Kannada Rajyotsava.

Labour minister, B N Bachhe Gowda, and Kannada Development Authority (KDA) chairman, Mukhyamantri Chandru, told reporters that the government had invoked Section 3 of the Karnataka Industrial Establishments (National Festivals) Act 1963 to enforce their decision upon the private sector.

Panama Amends November 4 Public Holiday For 2008

Sources: Gaceta Oficial (Ministerio de la Presidencia) and Panama public holidays ( On October 29, Panama's President, Martín Torrijos Espino, signed Executive Decree 416, making Tuesday, November 4, 2008, a public holiday for all government agencies at the national and municipal level.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

UK Shelves Plans For "Britishness" Public Holiday

Sources: AFP (London) and UK public holidays ( In reply to a written question from an opposition lawmaker, Constitution Minister Michael Wills told the House of Commons that there were no longer plans to create a new "Britishness" public holiday, or rename one of the existing bank holidays as such.

The idea of a Britishness public holiday had been launched by then Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown, after the 7/7 terrorist bombings in London, and it came to the fore after Gordon Brown became Prime Minister (our post of June 27, 2007).

Nepal Asked To Recognize Sambat New Year As Public Holiday

Sources: The Himalayan Times (Kathmandu) and Nepal public holidays ( Madan Krishna Shrestha, president of the Rastriya Bibhuti Sankhadhar Sakhwa Prathisthan organisation has called on the Nepalese government to recognize as a full-fledged public holiday, the the New Year day of the Nepal Sambat calendar.

Whether this comes to pass or not, will not have any net effect on business life as the Nepal Sambat New Year day always falls on the same day as the fourth day of the Tihar Festival, which is already an official public holiday in Nepal.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Bangladesh Could Restore November 7 Public Holiday

Sources: The Daily Star (Dhaka) and Bangladesh public holidays ( Earlier today, in a move reminiscent of what happened last year (our post of August 6, 2007), the High Court of Bangladesh issued a rule asking the government to explain, within four weeks, its cancellation of November 7 as a public holiday (see our post of November 29, 2007).

Due to the delay imparted, it would seem that November 7 will not be restored as a public holiday, in 2008, but it could very well be for 2009.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Honduras Moves Army Day Public Holiday For Civil Servants To November 10

Sources: El Heraldo (Tegucigalpa) and Honduras public holidays ( It was announced late last night that Honduras' President, Manuel Zelaya Rosales, had given instructions to the Minister of the Civil Service, Víctor Meza, to change the date when the public sector will observe this year's Army Day holiday, from Monday, October 27, to Monday, November 10, 2008.

For its part, the COHEP (Consejo Hondureño de la Empresa Privada) confirmed that the private sector would keep the date of October 27, which in itself already represented a last-minute change from the usual date of October 21 (see our post of September 16).

Spain's Valencia Region Announces Official Public Holidays For 2009

Sources: Las Provincias and Spain public holidays ( The Plenary Council of the Community of the Spanish autonomous region of Valencia has released its official calendar of public holidays for 2009. The announced dates are in line with the 2009 public holidays supplied, for over a year now, to licensees of the worldwide public holidays database.

Contrary to many other Spanish regions that have already announced their 2009 public holidays, the Community of Valencia will not move any of the 2009 public holidays that fall on a Sunday to the next Monday.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Philippines Government Clarifies Status Of October 31 and November 3

Sources: Philippines Information Agency (Tacloban City) and Philippines public holidays ( Reacting to the many queries received about what weekday would be a public holiday, as November 1st falls on a Saturday in 2008, Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita re-stated that both Friday, October 31, and Monday, November 3, 2008, would be regular working days.

Secretary Ermita, however, said that traditionally, government agencies allow their respective employees to work half-day on October 31 in order to enable them to go home to their provinces for the observance of All Saints' Day and All Souls Day.

Peru's San Román Province Declares October 24 Public Holiday

Sources: Radio Onda Azul and Peru public holidays ( Earlier today, the government of Peru's Province of San Román declared tomorrow, Friday, October 24, 2008, as a regional public holiday to coincide with the current 82nd anniversary of the founding of the Province of San Román.

Zambia Declares October 30 Public Holiday

Sources: The Zambia Daily Mail (Lusaka) and Zambia public holidays ( As we had surmised in our post of September 9, late last night, the government of Zambia declared a one-off public holiday on Thursday, October 30, 2008, on the occasion of the upcoming presidential election to replace former President Levy Mwanawasa, who died last August.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Philippines Declares November 10 Public Holiday In Eastern Samar

Sources: PIA Press Release (Malacañang) and Philippines public holidays ( President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (PGMA) has issued Presidential Proclamation No. 1643 making Monday, November 10, 2008 is a special one-off non-working holiday for the Province of Eastern Samar.

The 43rd Foundation Day Anniversary of the province of Eastern Samar falls on Sunday, November 9, this year. Therefore, the Office of the Governor of the Province of Eastern Samar had requested from President Arroyo that Monday, November 10, 2008 be declared as special non-working holiday instead.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Poland's Parliament Rejects Reinstatement Of Epiphany Public Holiday

Sources: Polskie Radio and Poland public holidays ( The Polish Parliament has rejected a draft bill (see our post of September 22) purporting to restore the Christian public holiday of Epiphany (January 6).

This Christian holiday, also called Three Kings in Poland, was a public holiday until the 1960's when the communist party cancelled it as part of its crack-down on the Catholic church.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Malawi Changes Date Of Mothers' Day Public Holiday

Sources: African Press Agency (Lilongwe) and Malawi public holidays ( Malawi's President, Bingu wa Mutharika, has announced that from this year onward, Malawi's Mothers' Day public holiday would be observed jointly with the UN-designated World Rural Women’s Day, and on the date of the UN day, October 15. Previously, Malawi's Mothers' Day public holiday was observed on the second Monday of October.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Zambia Asked To Declare New April 28 Public Holiday

Sources: Zambia National Broadcasting Cooperation (ZNBC) and Zambia public holidays ( The Zambian opposition party, the United National Independence Party (UNIP) has proposed to the government that it declare April 28, an annual public holiday, to commemorate the birthday of Zambia's first Republican President, Kenneth Kaunda, often considered to be the "father of the nation".

Recall from our post of August 25 that the birthday of recently departed President Levy Mwanawasa, on September 3rd, was made into a public holiday in Zambia.

Monday, October 13, 2008

India Declares Afternoon Public Holiday In Punjab

Sources: India Info (Chandigarh) and India public holidays ( India's Punjab State government has declared this afternoon a public holiday in Government offices, Corporations, Boards and Educational institutions and in the city of Chandigarh to allow employees to take part in the Nagar Kirtan procession to be held today for the birthday of Mahan-rishi, Valmiki.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Gambia Declares October 13 Football Public Holiday

Sources: African Press Agency (Banjul) and Gambia public holidays ( Earlier today, Gambian President, Yahya Jammeh, declared Monday, October 13, 2008, as a one-off public holiday to "properly" celebrate the Gambian national football team's one-all draw against Senegal that qualifies Gambia for the African Cup of Nations and the World Cup Football elimination series.

Maldives Run-Off Election Could Be Brought Forward

Sources: Minivan (Malé) and Maldives public holidays ( The Elections Commissioner of the Maldives, Mohamed Ibrahim, is quoted as saying that the second round of presidential elections might be held earlier than the announced October 29 date, due to a conflict with school exams (most schools serve as polling stations).

The most likely date mentioned for this run-off election would be the day before, Tuesday, October 28, 2008. In either case, we expect the date of the run-off presidential election to be declared a public holiday.

Update (15-oct-2008) The President of the Maldives, Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, acting on a request of the Elections Commission, has declared Tuesday, October 28, the date of second-round voting in presidential elections, and the day after, Wednesday, October 29, 2008, as one-off public holidays.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Chile Approves New October 31 Public Holiday

Sources: Diario La Tribuna (Santiago) and Chile public holidays ( After almost 2 years of tractations (see our post of November 10, 2006), at noon, yesterday, Chile's President, Michelle Bachelet, signed law 20.299 making October 31st a new annual public holiday to coincide with Reformation Day and to be called "Día Nacional de las Iglesias Evangélicas y Protestantes".

The bill's recent passage through the Senate added the "y Protestantes" to the name of the holiday, and made it into a movable public holiday, in the event that it falls on a mid-week weekday.

There had been rumours that one of the other public holidays of Chile would be canceled to compensate this new public holiday, the October 12, Día de la Raza, often being mentioned as most likely to be the one that would be canceled. This was not amended to the present bill, to ensure its timely passage for 2008, but Chile's Minister of the Presidency, José Antonio Viera-Gallo, stated in an interview last Thursday, that Chileans would loose one public holiday starting in 2009. He mentioned the possibility of it being the October 12 public holiday, but he also mentioned that the June 29, Saints Peter and Paul, public holiday named after the patron saints of fishermen could also be a good candidate for cancellation.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Romania Adds August 15 Public Holiday

Sources: Mediafax and Romania public holidays ( Following the request of Romania's President, Traian Basescu, and of the Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church (our post of August 18) Romania's lower house of Parliament passed a law making August 15 (the feast of the Dormition of the Most Holy Mother of God, also know as the Assumption) a public holiday, starting in 2009.

Unfortunately for Romanians, August 15 falls on a Saturday in 2009 and on a Sunday in 2010, so they will have to wait until 2011 to take advantage of this new public holiday. To make matters worse, the other new public holiday, voted at the same time this week, is Pentecost Sunday, which, as the name says ... always falls on a Sunday.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

India Declares October 17 Women-Only Public Holiday In Himachal Pradesh

Sources: Punjab Newsline Network (Shimla) and India public holidays ( The Himachal Pradesh government has declared a women-only gazetted public holiday for Friday, October 17, 2008, on the occasion of this year's Karvachauth festival.

This will apply to women employees working in all Government Offices, Boards, Corporations and Educational Institutions in the State of Himachal Pradesh.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Malaysia's Sabah State Announces Malaysia State Public Holiday Date

Sources: Sabah Tourism and Malaysia public holidays ( The government of Malaysia's State of Sabah has finally announced the date of Saturday, October 11, 2008, as replacement for the Malaysia Day and Sabah Head of State mid-September public holidays which were postponed this year due to their occurrence during the Muslim month of Ramadan.

As we reported in our post of September 1, the State of Penang has announced that it would celebrate the September 16 Malaysia Day public holiday, beginning in 2009. In addition, four other states controlled by the PKR, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (Kedah, Perak, Selangor and Kelantan) have indicated that they may declare September 16 as an annual public holiday.

Australia Moving Towards A Harmonization Of ANZAC Day Public Holiday

Sources: Tasmanian Government Communications (Hobart) and Australia public holidays ( The Government of Australia's State of Tasmania is considering allowing a day off work when ANZAC Day falls on a Sunday. This, in line with a recent principle agreement at the Federal level stating that all states should seek to harmonise their treatment of public holidays that fall on a Sunday.

Bangladesh Elections Set For December 18

Sources: South Asia News and Bangladesh public holidays ( The head of Bangladesh's military-backed government, Fakhruddin Ahmed, announced Thursday, December 18, 2008, as the date of the upcoming elections. As is the custom, these elections, which had been cancelled at the last minute in 2007, are expected to be the occasion of a one-off public holiday in Bangladesh.

Maldives Public Holidays October 8-9

Sources: MinivanNews (Malé) and Maldives public holidays ( Following a request from the Elections Commission, Maldives' President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom has declared Wednesday and Thursday, October 8 and 9, 2008, as one-off public holidays on the occasion of the nation’s first multi-party election, set for October 8.

In our post of September 17, we had surmised that October 8 would be declared a one-off public holiday, but the declaration of the 9th as an additional public holiday comes as a bit of a surprise, although less of one if one remembers that weekends are Fridays and Saturdays in the Maldives.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Nepal Confirm Official End of Ramadan Public Holiday

Sources: The Himalayan (Kathmandu) and Nepal public holidays ( The government of Nepal has officially declared tomorrow, Wednesday, October 1, 2008, as the first occurrence of Eid al Fitr (End of Ramadan) as a public holiday in Nepal.

We had announced the occurrence of this new public holiday in our post of December 28, 2007, but there was a lot of recent confusion as to whether this would actually occur or not.

Argentina Passes Law Moving October 12 Public Holiday

Sources: Diario el Litoral and Argentina public holidays ( As announced in our post of September 27, Argentina's parliament voted today to make the October 12 public holiday henceforth move to the following Monday, if it falls on a Saturday or Sunday.

The law still needs to be signed into law by president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner. However, considering that the impetus for this bill came from her (see our post of August 21) it is a virtual certainty that she will sign this bill into law, in time for this year's Día de la Raza public holiday.