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Honduras is set to celebrate its new annual public holiday on Monday, February 3, 2014, to coincide with the "Aniversario del Hallazgo de la Virgen de Suyapa" (the anniversary of the discovery of the Vigin of Suyapa).
Two years ago (2012-02-04), the President of Honduras, Porfirio Lobo Sosa, had asked Honduras' Congreso Nacional) to declare February 3 as a new annual non-working public holiday in Honduras to coincide with the "Aniversario del Hallazgo de la Virgen de Suyapa" (the anniversary of the discovery of the Vigin of Suyapa, Honduras' patron saint).
Shortly thereafter (2012-03-08), Honduras' Legislative Assembly (Congreso Nacional) indicated that it would approve the presidential request that February 3 be declared a new annual non-working public holiday in Honduras to coincide with the "Aniversario del Hallazgo de la Virgen de Suyapa".
This was followed by the "decreto legislativo número 188-2012, del 12 de octubre de 2012" (2012-10-14) which was finally gazetted, a year ago (2013-01-25) in the "Gaceta número 33,031 del 22 de enero de 2013". The issue of the status of this new, February 3, holiday did not come up last year, because February 3 was a Sunday in 2013, the first year when the Aniversario del Hallazgo de la Virgen de Suyapa took effect.
However, as the Ministro del Interior y Población, Rigoberto Chang Castillo, pointed out yesterday, this will only apply to the Honduran public sector ("Sector privado trabajará con normalidad") a view reinforced by the Honduran Cámara de Comercio e Industrias de Cortés (CCIC) which stated that "de acuerdo a las reglas del artículo 344 del Código de Trabajo el 3 de febrero no es considerado Fiesta Nacional, sino día festivo sin feriado".
The last time a public holiday was added to the official list of annual public holidays in Honduras was a decade ago (2001-12-05) when President Rafael Pineda Ponce, signed Decree 199-2001, which restored 3 of the 4 public holidays which had earlier been canceled as a means of rebuilding the economy shattered by Hurricane Mitch (1998-12-21).
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