Tuesday, November 6, 2012

... Nigeria's economy is the 3rd largest in Africa behind South Africa and Egypt. The United Kingdom is Nigeria's largest trading partner followed by the United States. In 2004, the Niger Delta militants began violence in oil infrastructures in order to fight for more share of the oil money since they were the ones suffering the pollution.

In 2008, the Umar Yar'Adua government offered then amnesty to lay down their arms. The programme had a reasonable success. In 2001, the Islamist extremist group Boko Haram was created. Boko Haram means literally 'book is a taboo' with book representing education in a broader term. However, they only became active in their terrorist activities in 2009 after their founder and leader, Muhammed Yusuf was killed by killed by military men.

Alhaji Aliko Dangote
Alhaji Aliko Dangote
Coincidentally or not, it was also after Goodluck Jonathan came into government. In their few years of operation, about 10,000 people have been reportedly killed. Efforts have been made by the federal government to negotiate with the group without any condition attached. The group has said it will negotiate with the federal government when its conditions are met like making former president General Muhammadu Buhari the head of the negotiation team, releasing their arrested members, and others.

The largest city (in land area) in Nigeria is Ibadan with a land area of 3080sq.km. It is also the largest in West Africa. The richest man in Nigeria and Africa is Aliko Dangote with a net worth of US$11.2bn (according to Forbes magazine). He is the majority owner of the Dangote group conglomerate. Unsurprisingly, his companies are also a testimony of his great exploits in Nigeria and beyond.

Dangote sugar refinery is the largest refinery in Africa and the third largest in the world producing 800,000 tonnes of sugar annually. To further buttress the point, Dangote cement is the largest company in Nigeria and West Africa. Furthermore, Dangote cement is the largest company traded on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, accounting for around one third of the exchange's total value.
Third Mainland Bridge
Third Mainland Bridge. Picture:Premiumtimesng
As of 2011, Dangote cement had a market capitalization of US$15billion. On June 11, 2012, the company plant in Obajana, Kogi State opened its third production line to become the largest plant in sub-Sahara Africa, and one of the world's largest with a yearly production of 10.25million tons per year. It is expected that by 2015, the plant would have been upgraded in infrastructures to be able to produce 15million tonnes per year.
This will make it the largest cement plant in the world. However with the current rate of growth of the company, analysts have predicted that goal could even be reached by 2014. Zenith Bank is the biggest bank in Nigeria, the 7th in Africa and the 322nd in the world with a total tier one capital of $2.398bn(according to The Banker magazine) and a total asset of $15.22bn.

The Banker also said, with a capital to asset ratio of 28.8percent, that Fidelity Bank is the soundest bank in the country. That is so surprising, I would not even think of it. Nigeria ranks first in Africa in farm output and twenty-fifth worldwide. Nigeria's economy is the 3rd largest in Africa behind South Africa and Egypt.

The United Kingdom is Nigeria's largest trading partner followed by the United States. No wonder they are always threatening us. The biggest disaster in Nigeria this year(2012) is a flood disaster in Kogi State which has affected over 600,000 people. It was caused by opening of lagdo dam in Cameroon.

Nigeria has the largest road network in West Africa and the second largest in Africa behind South Africa with about 108,000km of road. The largest rain forest in Nigeria and the oldest surviving one in Africa with an estimated total high forest of about 950,000hectares is in Cross River National Park in Cross River State.

The largest national park in Nigeria is Gashaka Gumti. Established in 1991, is located in Taraba and Adamawa States and along the Cameroon border. It contains the country's highest peak, Chappal Waddii known as the "Mountain of Death". Yankari reserve in Bauchi State, boasts the largest population of elephants in West Africa with 300 as well as several endangered species like the leopard. It has an area of 2,250sq.km and is the most popular tourist site in Nigeria with 20,000visitors in 2000(an old stat, I know).

The longest bridge in Africa is the Third Mainland Bridge which connects Lagos Island to Lagos mainland in Nigeria. It was constructed by Julius Berger Nigeria Plc. The bridge is 11.8 km in length.

According to Wikipedia, the Catholic Church has about 39million members in Nigeria thus making it the biggest christian denomination in the country. Most muslims in Nigeria are Sunni Muslims, the Shia muslims of Nigeria are primarily located in Sokoto State. There is controversy on which Nigerian city is the most beautiful. Some go for Calabar(in Cross River State) while others go for the capital city, Abuja. Some went for Lagos. It must be noted however that this is not as simple to choose as other more factual things. Different people have different criteria to determine beauty. I leave that for you to decide.