Sambisa Memorial Day

Sambisia Memorial Day is a holiday observed annually in Nigeria — or more specifically, in Borno State, northeastern Nigeria. This day commemorates the victims of Boko Haram insurgents and honors the fallen soldiers and volunteers who sacrificed their lives fighting Boko Haram.

It is also used as a day by the general public to celebrate the strength of the Nigerian armed forces. It has been observed since 2017 and is marked with political speeches, memorials, and religious services. Over the years, Boko Haram has displaced millions of people from their homes and has killed over 30,000 people, making them one of the deadliest terror groups in the world.

The History of Sambisia Memorial Day

In December 2016, Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari announced that his army had seized Boko Haram’s base in the Sambisia Forest. This led to the terrorists being crushed by Nigerian forces on December 22, 2016.

The following year, Sambisia Memorial Day was established to remember the victims of Boko Haram and to celebrate the victory of Nigerian forces in the Sambisia Forest.

Facts About Borno State

Below are some quick facts about Borno State in northern Nigeria.

  • Borno received its name from two Arabic words that together mean “Sea of Nuhu.”
  • Borno has an area of 72,609 square kilometers.
  • Borno State was formed on February 6, 1976.
  • This Nigerian state has a population of approximately 4.1 million people.
  • Borno State has 28 different languages, but only Kanuri, Marghi, and Shuwa Arabic are the most widely spoken.
  • This Nigerian state is rich in minerals, including limestone, silica sand, gypsum, uranium, and salt.

Observing Sambisia Memorial Day

On this day, memorial services are held, and special events such as military parades are organized. Since this day is a public holiday in Borno, Nigeria, the general public receives a day off, with schools, government buildings, and businesses closed.

Where is it celebrated?
Nigeria (Local holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
December 22 Sunday
Next year (2025)
December 22 Monday
Last year (2023)
December 22 Friday