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In today’s class, we will be talking about Nigeria: location, position and size. Enjoy the class!
Nigeria: Location, Position and Size
Chad and Cameroon are located in the east of Nigeria and Niger in the north. Its coast in the south lies on the Gulf of Guinea in the Atlantic Ocean.
Present-day Nigeria has been the site of numerous kingdoms and tribal states for millennia. The modern state originated from British colonial rule beginning in the 19th century, and the merging of the Southern Nigeria Protectorate and Northern Nigeria Protectorate in 1914.
The British set up administrative and legal structures whilst practising indirect rule through traditional chiefdoms. Nigeria became a formally independent federation in 1960 and plunged into a civil war from 1967–1970. It has since alternated between democratically-elected civilian governments and military dictatorships, with its 2011 presidential elections being viewed as the first to be conducted reasonably freely and fairly.
Nigeria is often referred to as the “Giant of Africa”, owing to its large population and economy. With approximately 174 million inhabitants, Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa and the seventh most populous country in the world. Nigeria has one of the largest populations of youth in the world.
The country is viewed as a multinational state, as it is inhabited by over 500 ethnic groups, of which the three largest are the Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba; these ethnic groups speak over 500 different languages and are identified with a wide variety of cultures.
Regarding religion, Nigeria is divided roughly in half between Christians, who live mostly in the southern and central parts of the country, and Muslims, concentrated mostly in the northern and southwestern regions. A minority of the population practise religions indigenous to Nigeria, such as those native to Igbo and Yoruba peoples.
In 2014, Nigeria’s economy (GDP) became the largest in Africa, worth more than $500 billion and $1 trillion in terms of nominal GDP and purchasing power parity respectively. It overtook South Africa to become the world’s 21st (nominal) and 20th (PPP) largest economy in 2015; furthermore, the debt-to-GDP ratio is only 11 per cent (8 per cent below the 2012 ratio).
The country’s oil reserves have played a major role in its growing wealth and influence. Nigeria is considered to be an emerging market by the World Bank and has been identified as a regional power on the African continent. Nigeria is considered to be a middle power in the world, and has also been identified as an emerging power; it is a member of the MINT group of countries, which are widely seen as the globe’s next “BRIC-like” economies. It is also listed among the “Next Eleven” economies set to become among the biggest in the world. Nigeria is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the African Union, OPEC, and the United Nations among other international organizations.
Since 2002, the North East of the country has seen sectarian violence by Boko Haram, an Islamist movement that seeks to abolish the secular system of government and establish Sharia law in the country. Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan in May 2014 claimed that Boko Haram attacks have left at least 12,000 people dead and 8,000 people crippled. At the same time, neighbouring countries, Benin, Chad, Cameroon and Niger joined Nigeria in a united effort to combat Boko Haram in the aftermath of a world media highlighted kidnapping of 276 schoolgirls and the spread of Boko Haram attacks to these countries.
- The latitudinal extent of Nigeria is (a) 100 (b) 120 (c) 140 (d) 150
- Nigeria is bounded in the west by (a) Cameroon (b) Niger Republic (c) Benin Republic (d) Chad
- Nigeria has a total land area of (a) 937, 682 sq km (b) 910, 230 sq km(c) 932,768 sq km (d) 923, 768 sq km
- The first military head of state to govern Nigeria after independence was (a) Gen. Ibrahim Babangida (b) Gen. Aguiyi Ironsi (c) Gen. Muritala Mohammed(d) Gen. Olusegun Obasanjo
- Which of these states is known as the home of solid mineral? (a) Niger (b) Plateau (c) Nasarawa (d) Oyo
- Write a short note on the location of Nigeria.
- Draw the map of Nigeria showing all the 36 states with the FCT.
In our next class, we will be talking more about Nigeria: Location, Position and Size. We hope you enjoyed the class.
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