The current flag of Cameroon was adopted on May 20, 1975 and is generally referred to only as the National Flag. It is rectangular in shape and made up of three equally-measured, vertical stripes. From left to right, the colors of the flag are: green, red, and yellow. A yellow, 5-pointed star sits at the center of the flag, in the middle of the red stripe. The size of this star may vary, depending on the use of the flag.

What Do the Flag's Colors and Symbols Mean?

Each of the three colors on the flag of Cameroon has a specific meaning. The green stripe is said to stand for plant life found in the southern region of the country. The color yellow represents the bright sun that shines over the savannas in the northern part of Cameroon and the red color is a reminder of the unity between these two major regions. The center star of this red stripe is also said to stand for one, united country. Additionally, green, red, and yellow are often referred to as the Pan-African colors, which refers to a movement with the goal of increasing the bond among people of African descent. These Pan-African colors also represent the post-WWII fight for independence faced by African nations.

Who Designed the Flag?

Cameroon was administered as a French trust territory in the mid-20th century. This relationship between the two countries went on to influence the design of the flag of Cameroon, which was based on the appearance of the French Tricolor flag. Rather than choosing the French colors, however, the parliamentary representatives decided to utilize the colors of the Pan-African movement and the African Democratic Rally political party.

What Have Historical Versions of the Flag Looked Like?

Prior to 1922, Cameroon was administered by the Kingdom of Germany. Under this government, the flag was a tricolor of 3 horizontal stripes: black, white, and red. An elephant head was located at the center of the flag. Between 1922 and 1961, the flag was influenced by the British government. It had a dark blue background with the British red and white cross (sometimes referred to as the Union Jack) located in the upper left corner. Cameroon began its process to independence in 1957, at which time the government adopted the current tricolor design. From 1957 to 1961, the flag of Cameroon had no images on its background. In 1961, 2 yellow stars were added to represent the union between the British Southern Cameroons and Cameroon.

This page was last modified on February 7th, 2018