Features include interactive map, in-depth stories, and more.Download now. »
The week's top five must-sees,
delivered to your inbox.
Nigeria, officially the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is a federal constitutional republic comprising 36 states and its Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. The country is located in West Africa and shares land borders with the Republic of Benin in the west, Chad and Cameroon in the east, and Niger in the north. Its coast in the south lies on the Gulf of Guinea on the Atlantic Ocean. There are over 500 ethnic groups in Nigeria of which the three largest ethnic groups are the Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba. The name Nigeria was taken from the Niger River running through the country. This name was coined by Flora Shaw, who later married Baron Lugard, a British colonial administrator, in the late 19th century. The British colonised Nigeria in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, setting up administrative structures and law while recognizing traditional chiefs. Nigeria became independent again in 1960. Several years later, it had civil war as Biafra tried to establish independence. Military governments in times of crisis have alternated with democratically elected governments. Nigeria known as "the Giant of Africa", is the most populous country in Africa, the seventh most populous country in the world and the most populous black country. Nigeria is roughly divided in half between Muslims, concentrated mostly in the north, and Christians, who mostly live in the South and central parts of the country. A minority practice traditional religions, especially the Yoruba religion. Its oil reserves have brought great revenues to the country. It is listed among the "Next Eleven" economies, and is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. (via Freebase)