Background: Nigeria was under British influence and control through the 19th century, however a series of constitutions after World War II granted Nigeria greater autonomy; independence came in 1960 (October 1st). She has been ruled by military for most of the 50 years of its independence from Britain but re-achieved democracy in 1999. Oil was discovered in Nigeria in 1956, at Oloibiri (Bayelsa State). Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa and the eighth most populous country in the world.
Population: 140,000,000 approx (2006 census)
Size Area: 923,768 km (square)
Calling Code: +234
Currency: The official currency is the Nigerian Naira (NGN), which is divided into 100 Kobo. The Exchange parity is not fixed, it fluctuates around the rate of US $ = NGN150.
Languages: English is the main language of Nigeria. There are over three hundred languages spoken in the country. The three major local languages are Hausa - spoken predominant in the north; Igbo is spoken predominantly in the southeast; and Yoruba which is spoken predominantly southwest.
Religion: Muslim 50%, Christian 40%, indigenous beliefs 10%
National Day: The 1st of October every year is used to commemorate her independence from Britain.
Weather & Climate: The weather in Nigeria varies; equatorial in the south, tropical in the midbelt and arid in north. There is a lot of rain during the rainy season (May to September) and it can be very hot in the dry season.
General: Nigeria is the 12th largest producer of petroleum in the world and the 8th largest petroleum exporter. She has the 10th largest proven reserves of petroleum in the world and has a great hospitable culture.
The main cities in Nigeria include the capital Abuja, the former capital Lagos, Ibadan, Osogbo, Calabar, Warri, Port Harcourt, Enugu, Kano, Kaduna, Onitsha, Jos, Ilorin, Maiduguri, Bauchi, Sokoto and Benin City.
Saturday and Sundays are the weekend holidays.
Local time is 1 hour + Greenwich Mean Time.
Visit visas must be issued by the Nigerian Embassy prior to arrival - for ALL countries. These visas cost a minmal fee.