Senegal has taken back control of all miltary bases held by former colonial rulers France as the country celebrates the 50th anniversary of its independence.
The move was announced by President Abdoulaye Wade after a day of parades and celebration attended by a number of African dignitaries.
In a televised address, Wade solemnly declared that Senegal would assume sovereignty over the bases from Sunday morning.
France has maintained a military presence in the West African country since decolonisation in 1960.
Paris and Dakar agreed in February that the 1,200 French miltary personnel would withdraw by the end of this year.
Talks are now to set to begin on the logistics of the handover.
On Saturday, Wade unveiled the controversial African Renaissance monument.
It is taller than the Statue of Liberty and comes with a high price tag to match, costing some 20 million euros to design and build. Some Muslims have also complained about the female figure’s uncovered legs