Activists Call on Moroccan Govt to Make Amazigh New Year National

Activists Call on Moroccan Govt to Make Amazigh New Year National

Rabat – Nekour Center for Culture and Freedom called on the head of the Moroccan Government to recognize the Amazigh New Year as a national holiday.The El Hoceima-based NGO said that all Moroccans must be given a day off in order to celebrate the Amazigh New Year.The NGO also said that the Amazigh culture and language have contributed in the enrichment of the Moroccan culture and identity, therefore it the Amazigh New Year should be recognized as a national holiday to all Moroccans. Known as “Yennayer”, Amazigh people across North Africa celebrate the new Amazigh New Year on January 12th.Yennayer is the first day of the agrarian calendar year used since ancient times by Amazigh people throughout North Africa. Even though this day has not yet been recognized officially in Morocco as a national holiday, most of Moroccans never miss this occasion to celebrate and exchange wishes and prayers during this day, which marks the beginning of a new Amazigh year.Although Amazigh New Year Event is celebrated by many Moroccans, every January 12, only few people do realize the symbolic and historical implications of this event.Under different names, Yennayer is celebrated by both Arab and Amazigh speaking communities. The Arab speaking community in old cities referred to this traditional event as “Haguza” or “Aam Alfilahi” (the Agrarian year). However, The Amazigh people, more precisely those dwelling in the south east of Morocco, call it “Id Suggas” (the night of the year). “Id Suggas” is a very traditional festivity on the Eve of the Amazigh New Year.


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