On October 1, 1960, Nigeria gained its independence from the United Kingdom. As was the habit of colonialists during that era, no attention was paid to the fact that the “protectorates” suddenly and quite chaotically merged together hundreds of distinct and autonomous ethnicities, or to the fact that some communities were ripped apart by the sudden construction of boundaries that never existed before. There was never a truly developed sense of singular Nigerian identity. In part, it was this disequilibrium which set the stage in 1966 to several successive military coups. The Northern coup, which was mostly motivated by ethnic and religious reasons, was a bloodbath of both military officers and civilians, especially those of Igbo extraction. The violence against the Igbo increased their desire for autonomy and protection from the military’s wrath.
By May 1967, the Eastern Region had declared itself an independent state called the Republic of Biafra and the 30 month Nigerian Civil War began. More than one million people died, many of them starving to death. During the oil boom of the 1970s, Nigeria joined OPEC and billions of dollars generated by production in the oil-rich Niger Delta flowed into the coffers of the Nigerian state. However, increasing corruption and graft at all levels of government squandered most of these earnings.
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Nigeria re-achieved democracy in 1999 and although the elections which brought Obasanjo to power in 1999 and again in 2003 were condemned as unfree and unfair, Nigeria has shown marked improvements in attempts to tackle government corruption and to hasten development. Ethnic violence over the oil producing Niger Delta region and inadequate infrastructures are some of the current issues in the country.
Top 50 Interest Facts About Nigeria
languages spoken on earth. Niger State alone has
languages than 30 African countries.
State, are the longest ancient earthworks in the
the only ruler who resisted control by Songhai,
greatest empire at that time. He founded and ruled
the Hausa city-state of Kebbi around 1600 A.D.
which was discovered in Dufuna village, Yobe State,
by a Fulani Herdsman in May 1987, while he dug a
houses and moats, is reputed to be the largest
single pre-colonial monument (or ancient
fortification if you like) in Africa. It is located in
present-day Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State.
brown bird, is found nowhere else on the planet but
colours, is found only in Southern Nigeria and
nowhere else on earth.
delta on the planet), has the highest concentration
of monotypic fish families in the world, and is also
home to 60 percent of Nigeria’s mangrove forests.
third largest on earth.
home to 4,715 different types of plant species, and
over 550 species of breeding birds and mammals,
making it one of the most ecologically vibrant
places of the planet.
early as 1000AD, with decorations that originated
from ancient America.
Hausa, Yoruba and the Ibo (Igbo) follow by Nupe, Fulani, there are
over 250 ethnic groups.
which is the largest and the longest river in West
Africa and is about 4,180 kilometres long.
150-200 movies every week is known as
Nollywood – it is ranked as the world’s second-
largest producer of movies and trails just behind
the Indian Bollywood industry.
Calabar towards the south of Nigeria are home to
the largest diversity of butterflies in the world.
AD), the 18th ruler of Ancient Kano, created the
first Golden Age in Northern Nigeria and ushered in
a period of great prosperity. During his reign,
Hausa became the biggest indigenous language
spoken in Africa after Swahili.
live in the mysterious Nigerian forests – the Drill
monkey that lives in the Afi Mountain ranges and
the lowland Gorilla.
Africa to win a FIFA competition when they won the
(now U17) World Cup in China in 1985.
football gold medal of an Olympics achieving this
indigenous and first autonomous university in
origins of the university are in Yaba College,
founded in 1932 in Yaba, Lagos as the first tertiary
educational institute in Nigeria.
Forbes’ 83rd Most Powerful Woman in the World.
Emily Kehinde Olukoga-Ogunde,who looked almost
identical, are probably the third set of twins in the
world to hit the century age and perhaps the first in
Group, is the richest man in Africa and richest
black man in the world.
Alakija, is a
Nigerian. She is worth about $600 million (N97
established by a missionary, Henry Townsend in
only Nigerian newspaper to attain a 500,000 copy
circulation with one title. The Daily Times had
emerged a colossus.
known attack in Borno in January 2011.
Ife, Osun State has the most beautiful campus in
Africa. It was founded in 1962.
of massive riots that put paid to Colonialism in
Nigeria. This was led by the women of Aba,
protesting the heavy taxation of the colonial lords.
They marched on the colonial offices and chased
the administrators away.
elected president to die in office.
Nigeria is the largest sawmill in Africa.
have been held in Nigeria – (Holy Ghost Festivals;
Redeemed Christian Church of God; 5 to 12 million
step firmly on the soil, crude oil will gush out.
president that was not elected after assuming the
mantel of leadership with the death of President
Musa Yar’Adua in 2010. He went on to win the
Presidential election a year later.
declare his assets according to the provision of
1999 constitution of Nigeria.
Kingdom is a Nigerian; Matthew Ashimolow of the
Kingsway International Christian Centre.
appearance at USA’94; she has gone on to appear
in three other finals but has never gone beyond the
stadium to be built in Africa. The stadium was
1960 during the tenure of Chief Obafemi Awolowo
Premier of the Western Region.
theatre man in Nigeria who lived entirely by the art.
$10m to Youeri Museveni to help topple the
despot, Idi Amin Dada.
lexicon) is also a common lingua franca. Roughly a
third of Nigeria’s
population speak Pidgin English which is a
simplified form of the language.
various masquerades of Nigeria, such as the Ndako Gboya Masquerade (Nupe Igunnuko), Eyo
masquerades, the Ekpe and Ekpo Masquerades of
the Efik/Ibibio/Annang/Igbo peoples of coastal
south-eastern Nigeria, and the Northern Edo
Masquerades. The most popular Yoruba wooden
masks are the Gelede masquerades.
economies, and is one of the fastest growing in
the world with the International Monetary Fund
projecting growth of 9 per cent in 2008 and 8.3 per
cent in 2009.
West Africa built at a cost of N30 billion located in
with a 23-storey building containing 358 rooms and
suites and a Presidential suite.
Africa and the seventh fastest growing city in the
world. The newest reports of the Nigeria Census
estimate the population is now 21 million, making
Lagos the largest city in Africa.
in Africa. Nigeria accounts for 10 per cent of
maternal deaths in the world, ranking the second
highest after India.
(PHCN) generates only 3,200 megawatts while the
nation needs at least 8,000 megawatts.
Other Interest Facts About Nigeria
West African combined. And in Professor Wole
Soyinka has the region’s first Nobel Prize winner.
There are more Muslims in Nigeria than there
are in Saudi Arabia – 60 million v 20 million. In
fact, there are more Muslims in Nigeria than there
are in any other country in Africa.
If you are proud of Nigeria, kindly drop your comment…