On Monday, October 1, Nigeria celebrates her 58th year of independence and to recognise the fact that Nigeria has been an independent country for 58 years, Legit.ng takes a look at the past to find the moments that defines Nigeria.
Nigeria has been through a lot as a country but there are notable moments of learning through hardship and moments of victory that made Nigeria. These events shape the present and future of Nigeria.
One of the most interesting facts about Nigeria is that she was not formulated by an indigene or an African, she was created by the amalgamation of the Northern and Southern protectorates by Lord Lugard in 1914.
For this year's independence, this article would take a look at most memorable events that transpired before and after Nigeria was formed.
1) Yoruba and the Nri Kingdom
The kingdom of Nri, which is where the Igbo culture began, was the first monarchy to be established in Nigeria. However, the Yoruba was the first group to ever live as a tribe in Nigeria.
Nri kingdom was seen as a safe haven for people who had been rejected from their communities. It was also a unique place because rulers did something unusual, they governed the people through political, religious and economic means.
2) Benin Empire
In the 15th century, the Edo people began the Benin Empire. The empire was one of the most popular empires in history due to the famous artworks that were created by the Benin people.
The empire became famous internationally for its artworks which were exported out of the empire to different parts of Europe. It was the first territory in Nigeria to rival any contemporary European power.
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3) The establishment of the Hausa Kingdom
Hausa people were influenced by the Islamic religion and even influenced other African regions such as Mali. The empire was created by old city states that lay between the Niger River and Lake Chad.
Although, it was a stronghold that had powerful trade and commerce as its central power, the empire fell apart in 1808. It was later revived by the British in 1880.
4) Nigeria's decolonization and independence
The British power had pulled out of the country in 1963, after Nigeria was decolonized. The people of Nigeria were finally free to govern their own affairs. However, influences of the colonization still remained behind even after the British left.
Nigerians still speak English as one of its major languages and parts of the way of life of the British people still remain.
5) The first National election
First national election was held in December, 1964. This happened a year after Nigeria gained her freedom and the first independent government of Nigeria was established.
6) Transition of power
In 2007, Nigeria had her first peaceful transition of power. The ruling governing parties had a peaceful transition of power since Nigeria became a state. Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar'Adua took over the government from Chief Olusegn Obasanjo.
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