55 Amazing and Interesting Facts about Nigeria | Amazing Facts 4U
Land & Geography
- The official name of Nigeria is the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Nigeria derives it’s name from river Niger which is the longest and largest river in West Africa.
- Nigeria is located in West Africa, it shares a land border with Benin, Chad, Cameroon, and Niger.
- The total land mass of Nigeria is 923,768 km² (356,669 mi²). Nigeria’s north occupies 80% of Nigeria’s land mass. In size it is four times the South.
- Nigeria has a population of nearly 178 million people making it the most populous country in Africa and most populous black nation. Out of every seven Africans one is Nigerian. Ethiopia is next populous nation with population half of Nigeria.
- The largest city in Nigeria is Lagos with an estimated population of around 9 million people just behind Cairo. The population of Lagos’ metropolitan area is about 21,000,000 making Lagos the largest metropolitan area in the whole of Africa.
- The country is made up of 36 state and Abuja, the federal capital Territory. The capital city is of Nigeria is Abuja, which was planned out and then built in the 1980s, officially replacing Lagos as the capital in 1991.
- The highest point in Nigeria is the mountain Chappal Waddi at 2,419 m (7,936 ft).
- The Benue River and the Niger River are the largest rivers in Nigeria, they join and empty into the large Niger Delta.
- The Niger Delta is the second largest delta on the planet.
- Nigeria’s mangrove forests are the largest in Africa.
Flora & Fauna
- Nigeria is 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.
- The Jos Plateau Indigo bird, a small reddish-brown bird, is found nowhere else on the planet but Plateau state, Nigeria.
- The Anambra waxbill, a small bird of beautiful colors, is found only in Southern Nigeria.
- Nigeria also contains two species of the rarest animals in the world: the lowland Gorilla and the Drill monkey.
- Nigeria has the most diverse range of butterflies in the world.
- Nigeria has an evidence of human existence dating back to 9000 B.C.
- Africa’s oldest known boat is The Dufuna canoe which was discovered in Dufuna village, Yobe state, in May 1987. Radio-carbon tests indicate that the canoe is over 8,000 years old, thus making it the oldest in Africa.
- Discovered in 1928, Nigeria’s North and North Central region hosts West Africa’s oldest civilization; the Nok, which flourished between 1000 BC and 300 BC.
- The capital city of Kanem-Borno, Ngazargamu, was one of the largest cities in 1658 AD; the metropolis housed “about quarter of a million people” and had 660 well planned, wide and unbending streets.
- Sarki Muhammad Kanta The Great of Kebbi, was the only ruler who resisted control by Songhai, West Africa’s greatest empire at that time. He founded and ruled the Hausa city-state of Kebbi around 1600 A.D and built Surame its capital, a planned city which was almost impossible to penetrate during war. In fact UNESCO describes Surame as “one of the wonders of human history, creativity and ingenuity”, and the most massive stone-walled constructions in West Africa.
- The Portuguese reached Nigeria in 1472. In 1880 the British began conquering Nigeria’s South. The North Nigeria was conquered by 1903.
- Albert E. Kitson discovered Coal in Enugu in 1909. This discovery led to the building of Port-Harcourt town in 1912.
- The Biafran Civil War started on July 6, 1967. After more than two million people were reportedly killed, the Biafran War came to an end on January 15, 1970.
- Nigeria has long history of intermittent military coups after independence.
- Boko Haram, the fundamentalist Islamist sect in the North made a resurgence in 2011 possibly linked to al-Qaeda in 2011. It launched nearly daily deadly attacks in 2011, including one on the UN headquarters in August in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, that killed 24 people. In April 2014, the group kidnapped about 280 girls from a school who haven’t been rescued yet. Fights continue to date.
Places / Architecture
- The Walls of Benin (800-1400AD) or moat, in present day Edo State, are the longest ancient earthworks wonder in the world. They enclose 6500 square kilometers of community lands that connected about 500 communities. At some places walls are as high as 18 meters. It is over 16000 km long, compared to the Great wall of China which is 21,000 Km.
People Customs & Culture
- English is the official language of Nigeria, and is used in education, business and for official purposes. Apart from this, over 30 other languages are spoken in the country.
- Amazingly Nigeria has 250 ethnic groups and tribes.
- Major tribes in Nigeria are Hausa-Fulani (29%), Yoruba (21%), Igbo (18%), Ijaw (10%) , Kanuri (4%) ,Ibibio (3.5%) and Tiv (2.5%).
- Most of the north Nigeria is Muslim while the South Nigeria is Christian.
- There are more Muslims in Nigeria (60 million) than there are in Saudi Arabia (20 million) , Syria and Afghanistan combined!. The country also has the largest Muslim population in Africa.
- Amazingly Nigeria has more English Speakers than England.
- Today, only Nigeria has a larger black population than Brazil. More than 3.5 million black Africans were captured, enslaved and transported to Brazil.
- Nigeria’s population was just 16 million in 1911. It is projected to hit 444 million by 2050, surpassing the US.
- Nigeria has the 4th highest number of poor, living under a dollar a day in the entire world. 100 million are ‘destitute’.
- The Yoruba tribe has the highest rate of twin births in the world. Igbo-Ora, a little town in Oyo state, has been nicknamed Twin capital of the World because of its unusually high rate of twins that is put as high as 160 twins per 1000 births.
- Nigeria has the highest number of musicians in the world.
- Nigeria has the highest number of police officers in Africa.
- According to old superstitions, you should not get married in May: “Marry in May and you’ll rue the day”.
- Nigeria’s Igbo tribe believe that they are descended from the lost tribes of Israel. In the eight century B.C., Israel’s northern kingdom was invaded by Assyrians who forced the 10 tribes of Israel into exile migrating to West Africa. These ‘Jews’ of Nigeria are highly entrepreneurial and have built indigenous tanks and other weaponry.
- Amazingly the cost of living in Abuja, is more expensive than the cost of living in London.
- Nigeria has more billionaires than any other country in Africa.
- Nigeria gained independence from British in 1960.
- Nnamdi Azikwe was the first President of the Republic of Nigeria.
- Nigeria has the highest paid legislators in the entire world.
- Nigeria’s president has the highest vehicle convoy in the world.
- Based on amount squandered, of an income of $81 billion per year, Nigeria is regarded as the most corrupt nation in the world.
Economy & Corporates
- Nigeria has ancient trade history. Kano city in 1851, one of the largest in Africa, made 10 million sandal pairs and 5 million hides for export every year.
- The currency of Nigeria is called the Naira.
- Nigeria has high levels of oil reserves. Oil was discovered in the state of Bayesla in the year 1956. Port court on the Niger delta is recognized as the center of the oil industry.
- It relies a lot on crude oil exports as 90% of the export income is obtained by it’s export.
- The Nigerian film industry, dubbed Nollywood, is the 2nd largest in the world in terms of output, producing between 1000 to 2000 films annually with an annual turnover of around $250million.
- The second largest deposit of bitumen can be found in Nigeria.
- Football is very popular in Nigeria, the national team known as the “Super Eagles” have made 5 appearances at the World Cup.
- With a net worth of $16 billion, Nigeria’s Aliko Dangote from Kano State in northern Nigeria is the richest Black person in the world.
By Amazing Facts 4U Team