Capital: Abuja


The first inhabitants (of what is now known as Nigeria) were thought to have been the "Nok People". The Fulani empire ruled the region from the beginning of the 19th century until the British annexed them in 1851. Later on, they seized control of the rest of the region by 1886.


federal republic

Ethnic Violence Timeline

2002 February - Some 100 people are killed in Lagos in clashes between Hausas from mainly-Islamic north and ethnic Yorubas from predominantly-Christian southwest.

2002 November - More than 200 people die in four days of rioting stoked by Muslim fury over the planned Miss World beauty pageant in Kaduna in December. The event is relocated to Britain.

2003 12 April - First legislative elections since end of military rule in 1999. Polling marked by delays, allegations of ballot-rigging. President Obasanjo's People's Democratic Party wins parliamentary majority.