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Today those who are not ethnic Yorubas or Igbos rarely speak Yoruba or Igbo.Pidgin, a mix of African languages and English, also is common throughout southern Nigeria.She referred to the area as Nigeria, after the Niger River, which dominates much of the country's landscape. More than 250 ethnic tribes call present-day Nigeria home.The three largest and most dominant ethnic groups are the Hausa, Yoruba, and Igbo (pronounced ee-bo).With regard to ethnic breakdown, the Hausa-Fulani make up 29 percent of the population, followed by the Yoruba with 21 percent, the Igbo with 18 percent, the Ijaw with 10 percent, the Kanuri with 4 percent, the Ibibio with 3.5 percent, and the Tiv with 2.5 percent.
Pidgin originally evolved from the need for British sailors to find a way to communicate with local merchants.Abuja is in a federal territory that is not part of any state.While Abuja is the official capital, its lack of adequate infrastructure means that Lagos remains the financial, commercial, and diplomatic center of the country. Nigeria has the largest population of any African country.It is bordered on the west by Benin, on the north by Niger and Chad, and on the east by Cameroon.
Nigeria covers an area of 356,669 square miles (923,768 square kilometers), or about twice the size of California.This general lack of Nigerian nationalism coupled with an ever-changing and often ethnically biased national leadership, have led to severe internal ethnic conflicts and a civil war.