Monday, 5 September 2011


Symbolism of Flag Elements
The red eagle depicts Nigeria’s strength.
The black shield signifies the fortuitous qualities of the land in agricultural, mineral and solid resources.
The Y-shaped silver coloured wavy band in the middle of the black shield represents the two major rivers in the country, River Niger and River Benue.
The two white horses signify dignity.
Nigerian National Pledge

I pledge to Nigeria my Country
To be faithful, loyal and honest
To serve Nigeria with all my strength
To defend her unity
And uphold her honour and glory
So help me God.

The Flag of Nigeria was designed in 1959 and first officially hoisted on October 1, 1960. The two unique sea-green bands represent the forests and abundant natural wealth of Nigeria while the white band represents peace.
The national flag is an adaptation of the winning entry in a competition held in 1959. The original had a red sun with streaming rays placed at the top of the white stripe. This was removed by the judges and the flag has not been altered since. Like other countries, Nigeria has special ensigns for civil and naval vessels. Some of its states also have flags. The designer of the national flag was a student, Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi. He hailed from Owu in Abeokuta, Ogun State was a student of Norwich Technical College, England when he saw the advertisement in the national daily that entries were being accepted for the design of a new National Flag. Akinkunmi quickly prepared his entry and sent it to Lagos where it was eventually picked in 1958 as the best and the flag was used to celebrate an independent Nigeria on October 1, 1960; when the Union Flag (Flag of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) was lowered for the Nigeria Flag to take its place on the flagpole.
Akinkunmi has received numerous awards from both individuals and organisations, and presently lives in Ibadan.
Description of Flag 
White vertical stripe sandwiched between two green stripes of equal dimensions.
Symbolism of Flag Elements 
White stripe denotes peace and unity and is also symbolic of the Niger River bisecting the countryside.
The green stripes represent agriculture.

Nigeria as a giant of Africa is greatly blessed with both human and natural resources.Among these graet men that our Country Nigeria can proud of is TAIWO AKINKUNMI- The man that designed Nigeria National Flag in the Year 1958. Born in the popular town of Owu in Abeokuta , Ogun state about three decades and half ago, Taiwo Akinkunmi spent the best part of his life abroad (where he designed the flag) and came back to the country to work in the ministry of Agriculture in the time of western region. 
A man whose commands honour and respect among the over 20 million young ones everyday. Students (when singing national anthem) stands attentively to honour the flag of Nigeria which the man used his initiatives to design 48 years ago. Visit any School in the Country, you find it there, it’s hanged in many offices even in the Presidential villa in Abuja, it’s there and other Nigerian Embassies abroad.
It is quite surprising to learn that the man that did that great thing for this country has not been honored with even the lowest out of the honors always bestow upon national heroes in our country every year. It is very unfortunate in this country that we leave our heroes who really worked patriotically to die and after their demise finding one yeye post-humous honor for them which we failed to do while they were alive or what can we say to the case of TAIWO AKINKUNMI who designed and tailored Nigeria with the color green white green? Or may be because the man is not rich or not actively taking part in the Politics of this decade....Thats the one million question I have for Baba Iyabo..Recently, I and my crew decided on a trip to give honour to whom honour is due. We paid a visit to Pa Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi, the man who designed Nigeria National Flag in the year 1958.We were ushered in by his son named Akinwumi Akinkunmi and we had a brief interaction with Baba who just clocked 70 years on earth. Enjoy the interview:Author : Good day Sir,Pa Akinkunmi : Good day, you are welcomeAuthor : Can we meet you sir?Pa Akinkunmi : My name is Taiwo Akinkumi, I hailed from Owu in Abeokuta, Ogun State.Author : Sir, can we know your educational background?Pa Akinkunmi : Yes, I attended Baptist Day Secondary School, Ibadan for my Primary education, Ibadan Grammar School, Ibadan for my Secondary education and after that I took up an appointment as a Civil Servant at Secretariat Ibadan. After working for a number of Years , I decided to travel overseas for further education. I discussed it with my colleagues and they told me the challenges in studying abroad. I later decided to face the challenges and I traveled abroad.Author : What Course did you study then and at which College?Pa Akinkunmi : I studied Agric. Engineering at Norway Technical College and after my graduation, I returned to the Country and served in the Ministry of Agriculture.Author : We all knew and believe that you were the one who designed Nigeria national flag in the colour green ,white and greenPa Akinkunmi : Yes, of courseAuthor : Sir, can you let us know how the whole things happened?Pa Akinkunmi: Yes, I was studying in London and on that particular day I visited the Library and came across a publication in the newspaper that competition is going on for the production of the National flag and the flag will be used in celebrating the independence of the Country.Author (cuts in) : What year was that sir?Pa Akinkunmi : That was the year 1958.Author : So, what happened after reading the publication?Pa Akinkunmi : I was so interested in the competition, so I decided to participate. I quickly rushed back to my hostel where I jotted down the details about the Competition. I immediately prepared my entry and sent it straight away to Lagos. Later, I received a letter that the entry I sent was picked as the flag for the independent Nigeria.Author : Sir, do you have the idea of the total number of entry submitted then?Pa Akinkunmi: There are were over 2000 entries submitted.Author : And your own entry was picked?Pa Akinkunmi : Yes.Author : Did you receive any award or prize for winning the competition then?Pa Akinkunmi: Yes, they gave me the prize of one hundred pounds (100 pounds)Author: Who gave you that?Pa Akinkunmi: The white men gave me as the man that designed the flag.Author : Sir, after that time, have you ever received any award or honour locally or nationally?Pa Akinkunmi: The prize then was the only one I receivedAuthor : You mean when you came back to the Country you have not been honoured?Pa Akinkunmi : I was in London when I received the prize of one hundred pounds and I’ve not received any award or national honor since the time I came back to the country. Although I received a lot of congratulatory messages from different set of people but I'm still expecting the Government of Nigeria to honour me with any National Honor and apart from that I want Government to come to my aid, I need the assistance at this present point in time, I'm dying of one sickness or the other, My children are still young and still find it difficult to cater for their needs.............People should pls come to my rescue.............lamented Pa Taiwo Akinkunmi (To read the full deatails about Taiwo Akinkunmi pls get Daily Sun of octber 1st, 2006(Weekend Sun)

The Federal Republic of Nigeria

The Nigerian flag
The Nigerian Flag:
The green stripes represent Nigeria's agriculture industry and its lush vegetation. The white stripe represents the desire for peace and unity within the country.
Nigerian Flag History:
The Nigerian flag was adopted the same day Nigeria gained independence from Britain on October 1, 1960. A competition was held to choose a new national flag to represent an independent Nigeria. A design by a Nigerian student named Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi was chosen in 1959 from almost 3,000 entries.
Interesting Nigerian Flag Facts:
When the Nigerian flag is flying, no other flag, emblem or insignia should be placed above the flag. Old or worn out Nigerian flags should never be displayed. When a Nigerian flag becomes soiled, old, torn or mutilated it should be destroyed by burning or any other method of respect.
Nigerian law deems it an offense for the Nigerian Flag to be improperly used or displayed. Law states that: "Any person who flies or exhibits the National Flag in a defaced or bad condition shall be guilty of an offence against this Ordinance."

Map of Nigeria, showing the states and Abuja

Nigeria, officially the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is a federal constitutional republic comprising thirty-six 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. The three largest and most influential ethnic groups in Nigeria are the Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba. In terms of religion Nigeria is roughly split half and half between Muslims and Christians with a very small minority who practice traditional religion. Until 1991, the capital was the largest city, Lagos, on the southwestern coast; at that time, the new city of Abuja, in the country’s interior, became capital. Nigeria has a federal form of government and is divided into 36 states and a federal capital territory. 
The Coat of Arms
The country’s official name is the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The people of Nigeria have an extensive history. Archaeological evidence shows that human habitation of the area dates back to at least 9000 BCE. The area around the Benue and Cross River is thought to be the original homeland of the Bantu migrants who spread across most of central and southern Africa in waves between the 1st millennium BCE and the 2nd millennium.
The name Nigeria was taken from the Niger River running through the country. This name was coined by Flora Shaw, the future wife of Baron Lugard, a British colonial administrator, in the late 19th century.

Obafemi Martins of Nigeria
 Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa, the seventh most populous country in the world, and the most populous country in the world in which the majority of the population is black. It is listed among the "Next Eleven" economies, and is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. The economy of Nigeria is one of the fastest growing in the world.
Nigeria is by far the most populated of Africa’s countries. Its many ethnic groups give the country a rich culture but also pose major challenges to nation building. The economy is dominated by the production of petroleum, which lies in large reserves below the Niger Delta. Oil wealth has financed major investments in the country’s infrastructure.

In precolonial times, the area was home to several kingdoms and tribal communities; in spite of European contact that began in the 16th century, they maintained their autonomy until the 19th century. The colonial era began in earnest in the late 19th century, when Britain consolidated its rule over Nigeria. In 1914 the British merged their northern and southern protectorates into a single state called the Colony and Protectorate of Nigeria. Nigeria became independent of British rule in 1960. Since then, the country has endured decades of on-and-off military rule.

Nigeria covers an area of 923,768 sq km (356,669 sq mi). At its widest, it measures about 1,200 km (about 750 mi) from east to west and about 1,050 km (about 650 mi) from north to south. The country’s topography ranges from lowlands along the coast and in the lower Niger Valley to high plateaus in the north and mountains along the eastern border. Much of the country is laced with productive rivers. The Nigerian ecology varies from tropical forest in the south to dry savanna in the far north, yielding a diverse mix of plant and animal life. Human population and development pose serious threats to both the ecological and the human environment…

River Niger Bridge (Onitsha, head bridge, Anambra state)

The broad, mostly level valleys of the Niger and Benue rivers form Nigeria’s largest physical region. The Niger enters the country from the northwest, the Benue from the northeast; they join at the city of Lokoja in the south central region and continue south, where they empty into the Atlantic at the Niger Delta. Together, they form the shape of a Y. 

Population densities and agricultural development are generally lower in the Niger and Benue valleys than in other areas. North of the Niger Valley are the high plains of Hausaland, an area of relatively level topography averaging about 800 m (about 2,500 ft) above sea level, with isolated granite outcroppings. The Jos Plateau, located close to Nigeria’s geographic center, rises steeply above the surrounding plains to an average elevation of about 1,300 m (about 4,200 ft). To the northeast, the plains of Hausaland grade into the basin of Lake Chad; the area is characterized by somewhat lower elevations, level terrain, and sandy soils. To the northwest, the high plains descend into the Sokoto lowland.

Zuma rock, Abuja.
Southwest of the Niger Valley (on the left side of the Y) lies the comparatively rugged terrain of the Yoruba highlands. Between the highlands and the ocean runs a coastal plain averaging 80 km (50 mi) in width from the border of Benin to the Niger Delta. The delta, which lies at the base of the Y and separates the southwestern coast from the southeastern coast, is 36,000 sq km (14,000 sq mi) of low-lying, swampy terrain and multiple channels through which the waters of the great river empty into the ocean. Several of the delta’s channels and some of the inshore lagoons can be navigated.
Southeastern coastal Nigeria (to the right of the Y) consists of low sedimentary plains that are essentially an extension of the southwestern coastal plains. In all, the Atlantic coastline extends for 850 km (530 mi). It is marked by a series of sandbars, backed by lagoons of brackish water that support the growth of mangroves. Large parts of Africa’s Bight of Benin and Bight of Biafra fall along the coast. Because of the Guinea Current, which transports and deposits large amounts of sand, the coastline is quite straight and has few good natural harbors. The harbors that do exist must be constantly dredged to remove deposited sand.
Inland from the southeastern coast are progressively higher regions. In some areas, such as the Udi Hills northwest of Enugu, escarpments have been formed by dipping rock strata. Farther east, along Nigeria’s border with Cameroon, lie the eastern highlands, made of several distinct ranges and plateaus, including the Mandara Mountains, the Shebeshi Mountains, the Alantika Mountains, and the Mambila Mountains. In the Shebeshi is Dimlang (Vogel Peak), which at 2,042 m (6,699 ft) is Nigeria’s highest point.

National Stadium Abuja
On 1st October 1960, Nigeria became self-governing from British colonial rule and was administered at the center by the Federal government and three regions Governments in the East, West and North of the country. In 1963, the Midwest Region was carved out of the Western Region making a federation of four Regions. During this First Republic, a parliamentary system of government was in operation. This lasted till January 1966.
The first military intervention in Nigeria occurred in January 1966 when the civilian government was overthrown   in a military coup. This effectively marked the beginning and succession of military governments in the nation's political history. Military-rule continued till 1979 when the then Head of State, General Olusegun Obasanjo handed over power to the civilian government of President Shehu shagari.
In the second Republic of President Shehu shagari, Nigeria adopted the Presidential system of government with an Executive President as the Head of the Federal Government. The administration was in power until 1983 when it was overthrown in a coup and the military once again came into governance. Nigeria again witnessed another round of military governments until 1993 when General Ibrahim Babaginda the head of the military government, put in place an interim civilian administration charged with conducting elections. This   interim administration lasted for only three months when it was replaced in a palace coup by the military. The new military administration was headed by General Sani Abacha.
General Sani Abacha's Government ruled the country from 1993 to 1998 when the Head of State suddenly died in June 1998. It must be pointed out that during this particular regime, Nigeria faced tremendous opposition from the International Community over human rights abuses, culminating in Nigeria's suspension from the Commonwealth. Indeed, at this period, Nigeria was treated like a pariah nation, tolerated only by a few and abandoned by other countries, including her traditional allies like Britain and Canada.

Murtala Mohammed International Airport Lagos

With the sudden death of General Abacha in June 1998 General Abdulsalami Abubakar headed the new military administration, and was immediately confronted with the Herculean task of drawing Nigeria back from the brink of collapse and restoring her image. The issue of human rights abuses was immediately addressed with the release of all political detainees and prisoners. The Government also announced and implemented faithfully a political transition program that ushered in a new civilian government in May 1999. Precisely in less than one year. Thus, General Abubakar administration was able to restore democracy back in Nigeria. The administration of Chief Olusegun Obasango was inaugurated on May 29, 1999. Simultaneously, executive governors were also sworn-in in the 36 states constituting the present Federal Republic of Nigeria.

In the Presidential System of Government that is now in place, there is a National Assembly comprising two clambers namely the Senate and House of Representatives. There is a State Assembly in each of the 36 States. Also there are 774 local governments throughout the Federation representing the third-tier of government.
Since democracy was restored in the country there has been a gradual and impressive transformation of the political landscape. In 1999 only 3 political parties contested elections in Nigeria. But in 2003, 25 new political parties were registered by the national Electoral body, bringing to 28 the number of political parties that contested the 2003 elections.

The Communications Tower overlooking Victoria island, Lagos.
 The key test to the political future of Nigeria still lies in an enduring civilian governance. Elections conducted by civilian administration in 1965 mad 1983 had failed and led to military   interventions. Nigerians are, therefore, now strongly determined, more than ever, to lay a solid foundation for an enduring democracy that would be the pride of future generations of Nigerians. The present civilian government has shown its commitment development of the country.The administration is determined to transform the country in line with democratic principles into a land of opportunity, equity and prosperity for all.

Nigerian National Anthem

Version 1                                                                                                   
Arise, O compatriots,
Nigeria's call obey
To serve our fatherland
With love and strength and faith
The labour of our heroes past
Shall never be in vain
To serve with heart and might
One nation bound in freedom, Peace and unity.
Version 2                                           
Oh God of creation,
Direct our noble cause
Guide our leaders right
Help our youth the truth to know
In love and honesty to grow
And living just and true
Great lofty heights attain
To build a nation
Where peace and justice
Shall reign.

Nigeria as a giant of Africa is greatly blessed with both human and natural resources. Among these great men that our country Nigeria can be proud of is TAIWO AKINKUNMI- the man that designed the Nigerian National Flag in the Year 1958. Born in the popular town of Owu in Abeokuta, Ogun state, Taiwo Akinkunmi spent the best part of his life abroad (where he designed the flag) and came back to the country to work in the ministry of Agriculture at the time of western region.

Here is a man who commands honour and respect among over 20 million young ones everyday. Students (when singing national anthem) stand attentively to honour the flag of Nigeria which the man used his initiatives to design 48 years ago. Visit any school in the country, you find it there, it’s hanged in many offices even in the Presidential Villa in Abuja, it’s there and in all Nigerian Embassies abroad.

It is quite surprising to learn that the man that did that great thing for this country has not been honored with even the lowest out of the honors always bestowed upon national heroes in our country every year. It is very unfortunate in this country that we leave our heroes who really worked patriotically to die and after their demise finding one yeye post-humous honor for them which we failed to do while they were alive or what can we say to the case of TAIWO AKINKUNMI who designed and tailored Nigeria with the colour green white green?

No comments:

Post a Comment