Switzerland’s purported move to shift the country’s National Day to tennis great Roger Federer’s birthday was a hoax spread by Swiss parliamentarians as an April Fool’s Day prank, Swiss Tourism (ST) said in a statement on Friday.
“As part of the hoax, Councillor Nicolo Paganini (Die Mitte, SG), President of the Swiss Tourism Federation along with other members of the Swiss Parliament, announced that they will launch an urgent parliamentary resolution during the extraordinary parliamentary session in May proposing that the Swiss national holiday on 1 August be moved to Federer’s birthday on 8 August as a gesture to thank him for his efforts to promote tourism in Switzerland,” said ST.
The prank was triggered by Federer being announced as Swiss Tourism’s brand ambassador. “I was delighted with the idea, but I am glad that the Swiss national holiday is not being tampered with. I’m just as proud to be a brand ambassador for Switzerland Tourism,” said Federer.
In India too, this campaign was supported by Switzerland Tourism India on all its social media platforms.
“After the official announcement on March 29, the board thought it was a great idea to lighten things up a bit and have some fun on April Fool’s Day.
“We wanted to spread some cheer about the announcement of Federer’s association with us through this hoax. Everyone had a good laugh and will surely remember this,” said Switzerland Tourism India Deputy Director and Marketing head Ritu Sharma.