National Day of Nigeria
President - Muhammadu Buhari
Vice President - Yemi Osinbajo
Manufactured products like leather, textiles, t-shirts, plastics and processed food enhance the economy of the country. Agriculture is also important, employing almost sixty percent of Nigerians. Cocoa, sugar cane, yams, maize, palm oil, groundnuts, coconuts, citrus fruits, pearl millet, and cassava are the major agricultural products.
However, health care, education, and general living conditions in Nigeria are poor, and these pose a serious threat to the otherwise advancing country.
Along with South Africa, Nigeria is considered a super-power in the African continent and consequently Nigerians are generally proud of their country. It has the largest population in Africa and the land is endowed with vast quantities of natural resources. It is the sixth largest oil-producing nation and has a well-educated and industrious society. They are fond of the expression, "When Nigeria sneezes, the rest of the African nations (with the exception of South Africa) catch cold."
Extended families are still the norm and are in fact the backbone of the social system. Grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles, sisters, brothers and in-laws all work as a unit through life.
Family relationships are guided by hierarchy and seniority. Social standing and recognition is achieved through extended families. Similarly a family's honour is influenced by the actions of its members. Individuals turn to members of the extended family for financial aid and guidance, and the family is expected to provide for the welfare of every member. Although the role of the extended family is diminishing somewhat in urban areas, there remains a strong tradition of mutual caring and responsibility among the members.
Nigeria is a hierarchical society. Age and position earns, even demands, respect. Age is believed to confer wisdom so older people are granted respect. The oldest person in a group is revered and honoured. In a social situation, they are greeted and served first. In return the most senior person has the responsibility to make decisions that are in the best interest of the group.
Nigeria is a country of rich ethnic diversity composed of over 250 ethnic groups. The three largest ethnic groups in Nigeria are the Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba. The other major tribes in the country include Edo, Ijaw, Kanuri, Ibibio, Ebira Nupe and Tiv. Also there are minority groups of British, American, East Indian, Chinese, white Zimbabwean,Japanese, Greek, Syrian and Lebanese immigrants in Nigeria.
ARGUNGU FISHING FESTIVAL
The popular Argungu Fishing Festival is one of the most famous and exciting traditional festivals in Nigeria. The four-day annual festival dates back to 1934 and has continued with more alluring dynamics every year. The festival is an all-men affair; women can only be there as spectators.
The Sharo (also called Shadi) Festival is celebrated among the Jafun Fulani. Referred to as the Flogging Competition, it is a traditional rite for young men. The participants are escorted by girls to the event venue and led into a ring formed by spectators, their chests exposed. They are not allowed to wear shirts or cover the upper part of their bodies. The drumming, singing and cheers of the crowd combine to create an atmosphere of excitement.
NEW YAM FESTIVAL
The New Yam Festival is a popular annual cultural festival in Igbo land, Southeast Nigeria. The festival is held at the end of every farming season, usually in August, to mark the beginning of harvest. Symbolically, the festival, known as Iri ji ohu, Iwa ji or Ike ji in the Igbo language presents the people with the opportunity to make sacrifices and thank their gods for granting them a bountiful harvest. Iri ji or Iwa ii literally means "eating new yam".
The traditional institution of the Igbo people is made more prominent by the celebration of Ofala Festival by various traditional rulers. The word, "ofala" is derived from two Igbo words - ofo, which means "authority" and ala, which means "the land". The summation of these words forms the word, ofala, which means "the authority of the land".
ONITSHA IVORY FESTIVAL
Among the Igbos, the Onitsha Ivory Festival is one of the most famous. Ivory - the substance elephant tusks are made of - is regarded as a very expensive item for the traditional institution in Igbo land. It is, therefore, usually worn by a select category of women who can afford it. They are usually the wives of wealthy and powerful men in society.
CALABAR FESTIVAL AND CALABAR CARNIVAL
Since Cross River State held the first edition of the Calabar Carnival in 2004, it has become one of the most famous festivities in the country. The carnival is one of the efforts aimed at making Cross River State an all-important tourist centre. It kicks off at the end of the annual Calabar Festival, which takes place in December every year. The Calabar Festival is a celebration of the diverse culture of the people of the state.
The Calabar Carnival is a very spectacular event, with dancers in colourful costumes and long, feathered headdresses dancing along the major streets in the state capital, as sonorous music fills the air. The street parades showcase up to 50, 000 young people, twisting their supple bodies into admirable spectacles. The occasion attracts no less than two million people from different parts of the country and beyond to Calabar every year.
The Eyo Festival, otherwise known as the Adamu Orisha Play, is a Yoruba festival unique to Lagos. Traditionally performed on Lagos Island, the festival is presently showcased by the people of Lagos as a major tourist event.
The word 'eyo' refers to the costumed dancers, known as masquerades, that perform during the festival. The origin of its observance is found in the clandestine activities of secret societies. It is believed that the play is one of the manifestations of the customary African revelry that serves as the forerunner of the modern carnival in Brazil.
1. Nigeria takes its name from the Niger River, the third largest river in Africa.
2. Nigeria is one of sub-Saharan Africa’s fastest growing economies.
3. Nigeria has one of the world’s greatest birth rates for twins.
4. It is Africa’s most populous country and one of the continent’s top oil producers.
5. The largest butterfly diversity in the world can be found in the areas around Calabar, Cross River State.
6. The drill monkey, one of the most endangered mammal species in Africa, can only be found in the wild in Nigeria and its neighboring country of Cameroon. (A sub-species is found in Equatorial Guinea.)
7. Majek Fashek, one of the more popular reggae artists from the ’80s and early ’90s, is a Nigerian.
8. In Nigeria, the terms “010,” “101,” etc. refer to meals in a day. “010” means to skip breakfast and dinner but eat lunch, while “101” means to skip lunch but to eat breakfast and dinner.
9. Chinua Achebe, author of the successful novel “Things Fall Apart,” was born in Southeastern Nigeria in 1930.
10. When a Nigerian man gives a gift to a woman, he would say that the gift came from his wife, mother, sisters, etc., and not from himself.
Nigeria's Top Attractions
- Lagos - The commercial capital of West Africa, Lagos is a spirited, bustling place with a population of 10 million. The city has an excellent nightlife, many street markets, and a decent National Museum. If you take basic safety precautions you'll enjoy urban Africa at its most vibrant.
- Yankari National Park - Nigeria's most popular national park is located in the savanna of the north-east. Yankari is a popular eco-destination, with lots of wildlife including elephants, and wonderful hot springs.
- Jos - Jos is really a very pleasant city with an interesting museum and small wildlife park where pygmy hippos are the main attraction. The climate is nice and cool and who would miss a chance to visit a city
- Kano - the main city in northern Nigeria has lots of interesting sights for visitors, including traditional Hausa homes, markets, mosques, the emir's palace, and original dye pits.
- New Year's Day
- Id el Maulud
- Women's Day
- March equinox
- Presidential Election Day
- Good Friday
- Holy Saturday
- Easter Day
- Easter Monday
- Workers' Day
- Children's Day
- Democracy Day
- June Solstice
- Id el Fitr
- Id el Fitr
- Id el Fitr additional holiday
- September equinox
- Id el Kabir
- Id el Kabir additional holiday
- National Day
- Al-Hijra (Islamic New Year)
- December Solstice
- Christmas Eve
- Christmas Day
- Boxing Day
- New Year's Eve