GEOGRAPHY Nigeria is located on the Gulf of Guinea. Its largest cities are located inthe lowlands of the south. The central part of the country consists ofhills and plateaus. The north consists of arid lowlands. Theneighboring countries are Benin, Niger, Chad and Cameroon. The forests and woodlands occur mainly in the southern third of thecountry, which is affected by seasonal rains coming from the AtlanticOcean between June and September. As one goes north, the countryis becoming drier and the vegetation more similar to the savanna. Thenorthern third of the country is included in the semi-arid Sahel region,which marks the southern boundary of the Sahara desert. Nigeria is divided into three rivers Niger and Benue, arriving in thecountry coming from the northeast and northwest and will join more orless in the center, near the new capital, Abuja. Hence, the Niger RiverBenue added with water flows south to empty into the sea in a largedelta
HISTORY Europeos and Independence In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries began to arrive the Europeanmaritime powers, especially the British, who eventually won the regionmilitarily. After World War II, before the struggle for independence, the British tried aConstitution that would unite people Muslim, Catholic and Protestant, whonever experience to operate efficiently. So when Nigeria gained itsindependence in 1960, was primarily comprised of three nations. The first six years of independence were disastrous, and in 1966 a groupof young officers, most Ibos, carried out a ruthless coup that brought topower the General Ironsi. Some months later he was deposed in anothercoup by Lieutenant Colonel Yakubu Gowon, a Christian from the northernregion.
CIVIL WARIn May 1967 anothermilitary Ojukwu, whonever renconheceu toGowon, declared theseparation of the easternpart of the country,creating the state ofBiafra. The following civilwar caused the death fromhunger of almost twomillion biafrenhos. Theyear was 1970
THE FLAG In 1959, a competition was organized todefine the future flag of Nigeria. Between2870 tenders, won the drawing for a studentof Ibadan, Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi. Green represents agriculture; white, peaceand unity ("Peace and Unity" was the firstmotto of Nigeria). The flag of Nigeria was designed in 1959 andfirst officially hoisted on October 1, 1960.
CULTURE Nigeria brings together an extraordinary mixof cultures, religions and peoples, which canbe admired in urbanism and architecture ofdifferent cities, according to the countrywhere they were. Although now dominatesthe culture and the Islamic religion, thecolonial past of Nigeria, especially British, isevident at every step.