Gabon

Culture of Gabon

The People

Gabon's official language is French. Gabonese wear Arician and Western clothing, and cleanliness is very important to them. About 60% of the people practice the Roman Catholic religion. 20% of the Gabonese are Protest, while the remaining people practice animist beliefs or are Musilim.

Customes and Courtesies

Even if you see someone multiple times in one day the Gabonese shake their hand and smile. You extend a closed fist, plam down, if your hand if dirty so the person can shake your wrist. People of the same gender often hold eachothers hands while talking (especially men). If someone invites you inside for a drink it is rude to say no, and the guests should always provide a drink and refill their glass quickly.

Lifestyle

An extended family will often live in a large compound of buildings, usually sharing child care, cooking, and other chores. In dating and marriage, the girl will visit the girl at her parents' home and the family often has a great influence in the choice of who their child marries. An official public holiday is Noel (our Christmas) and Paques (our Easter). Many businesses often close at noon and have a long lunch break coming back at 3 p.m. to open their shops.

Society

The Gabonese elect a president and prime minister for a 7 year term. They also have a Senate of 91 people and National Assembly of 120 people. You must be 21 years and older to vote. In school, students attend for as many as 13 years and then take an exam called the bac exam. Only wealthy and government people have private cars. People mostly walk.