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Lesotho King’s Birthday

Lesotho King’s Birthday: July 17

Lesotho King’s Birthday is a public holiday in Lesotho.

Lesotho has a monarchy system and is one of the last few countries remaining in sub-Saharan Africa to have such a system of government. Its present king is King Letsie III.

Lesotho King’s Birthday History

King Letsie III who was born on 17th July, 1963 at the Scott Hospital in Morija to the late King Moshoeshoe II and Queen ‘Mamohato Bereng Seeiso. He was sworn into office of King on November 12th, 1990 and since then Lesotho has regularly celebrated its King’s birthday on July 17th.

The King’s birthday celebrations in Lesotho are generally preceded by the presentation of awards and medals to citizens- both civilians and members of the Lesotho Defence Force, Mounted Police Service and Prisons Service.

Lesotho King’s Birthday Traditions and Activities

The King’s birthday celebrations are usually characterised by the playing of choral music, famo music and the traditional dances mokhibo and ndlamo. The Royal Salute and the 21-gun salute, singing of the national anthem (Lesotho Fat’se La Bo-Ntata Rona), prayer led by the Christian Council of Lesotho, and parades by soldiers dressed in ceremonial green uniforms with white belts and gloves are other characteristics of the King’s birthday celebrations in Lesotho. The crowds that gather at the venue of the celebrations of the King’s birthday are known to greet the King and his entourage with ululations and cheers. The King’s birthday is a public holiday, and more specifically a bank holiday in Lesotho.

The King’s birthday celebrations are held in different districts of Lesotho starting from 2003. In 2003, it was held in Matsieng, which is the king’s home and the seat of the royalty. Decentralisation of the King’s birthday celebrations was announced in 2003 so that all citizens of Lesotho could appreciate the importance of the King’s birthday and take part in the celebrations.

In 2009, the King’s birthday was celebrated in Mohale’s Hoek. A horse racing event was a part of the celebrations.

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