ABUJA (/əˈbuːdʒə/ ) is the capital city of
Nigeria located in
the centre of the country within the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
It is a planned city and was built mainly in the 1980s, replacing the
country's most populous city of
Lagos as the capital on 12 December
1991. Abuja's geography is defined by
Aso Rock , a 400-metre (1,300
ft) monolith left by water erosion . The Presidential Complex ,
National Assembly , Supreme Court and much of the city extend to the
south of the rock.
Zuma Rock , a 792-metre (2,598 ft) monolith, lies
just north of the city on the road to
Kaduna State .
At the 2006 census, the city of
Abuja had a population of 776,298,
making it one of the ten most populous cities in
Nigeria . According
United Nations ,
Abuja grew by 139.7% between 2000 and 2010,
making it the fastest growing city in the world. As of 2015 , the
city is still experiencing an annual growth of at least 35%, still
retaining its position as the fastest-growing city on the African
continent and one of the fastest-growing in the world.
witnessed a huge influx of people into the city; the growth has led to
the emergence of satellite towns, such as
Karu Urban Area ,
Kuje and smaller settlements towards which the
planned city is sprawling. The unofficial metropolitan area of Abuja
has a population of well over three million, making it the fourth
largest metropolitan area in Nigeria, surpassed only by
Lagos , Kano
Ibadan . As at 2016, the metropolitan area of
Abuja is estimated
at 6 million persons, placing it behind only Lagos, as the most
populous metro area.
Major religious sites include the
Nigerian National Mosque and the
Nigerian National Christian Centre
Nigerian National Christian Centre . The city is served by the Nnamdi
Azikiwe International Airport .
Abuja is known for being one of the
few purpose-built capital cities in Africa, as well as being one of
* 1 History
* 2 Districts
* 2.1 Central Business District
* 2.2 Garki District
* 2.3 Wuse District
* 2.4 Maitama District
* 2.5 Asokoro District
* 2.6 Gwarinpa District
* 2.7 Durumi District
* 3 Radio stations
* 4 Climate
* 4.1 Vegetation
* 5 Skyline and landmarks
* 6 Universities in
* 7 International Schools in
* 8 Transportation
* 8.1 Airport
* 8.2 Rail
* 9 Parks and open areas
* 9.1 Bush Bars
* 10 Postal system
* 11 Twin towns – Sister cities
* 12 See also
* 13 References
* 14 External links
Nigeria\'s National Assembly in
"Abuja" was in the earlier 20th century the name of the nearby town
The indigenous inhabitants of
Abuja are the
Gbagyi (Gwari) as the
major language, Bassa, Gwandara, Gade, Ganagana, Koro etc. In light of
the ethnic and religious divisions of
Nigeria , plans had been devised
since Nigeria's independence to have its capital in a place deemed
neutral to all major ethnic parties, and also in close proximity to
all the regions of Nigeria. The location was eventually designated in
the centre of the country in the early 1970s as it signified
neutrality and national unity. Another impetus for
Abuja came because
Lagos ' population boom that made that city overcrowded and
conditions squalid. As
Lagos was already undergoing rapid economic
development, the Nigerian regime felt the need to expand the economy
towards the inner part of the country, and hence decided to move its
capital to Abuja. The logic used was similar to the way Brazil
planned its capital,
Brasília . Construction broke ground and was
dedicated in the late 1970s but, due to economic and political
instability, the initial stages of the city were not complete until
the late 1980s.
The master plan for
Abuja and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) was
developed by International Planning Associates (IPA), a consortium of
three American firms: Planning Research Corporation; Wallace, McHarg,
Roberts and Todd ; and Archisystems, a division of the Hughes
Organization. The master plan for
Abuja defined the general structure
and major design elements of the city that are visible in its current
form. More detailed design of the central areas of the capital,
particularly its monumental core, was accomplished by
Kenzo Tange , a
renowned Japanese architect, with his team of city planners at Kenzo
Tange and Urtec company.
Most countries relocated their embassies to Abuja, and many maintain
their former embassies as consulates in
Lagos , the commercial capital
Abuja is the headquarters of the Economic Community of
West African States (ECOWAS) and the regional headquarters of
Abuja and the FCT have experienced huge population growth; it has been
reported that some areas around
Abuja have been growing at 20% to 30%
per year. Squatter settlements and towns have spread rapidly in and
outside the city limits. Tens of thousands of people have been
evicted since former FCT minister
Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai started a
demolition campaign in 2003.
The FCT's ministers have been as follows:
* Mobolaji Ajose-Adeogun 1976–1979
* John Jatau Kadiya, 1979–1982
* Iro Abubakar Dan Musa, 1982–1983
* Haliru Dantoro, 1983–1984
Mamman Jiya Vatsa , 1984–December 1985
Hamza Abdullahi , 1986–1989
Gado Nasko , 1989–1993
Jeremiah Timbut Useni , 1993–1998
Mamman Kontagora , 1998–1999
* Ibrahim Bunu, 1999–2001
Mohammed Abba Gana , 2001–2003
Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai , 2003–May 2007
Aliyu Modibo , 2007–2008
Adamu Aliero , 2008–2010
* Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed , 2010–2015
* Mohammed Bello, 2015–Present
The Phase 1 area of the city is divided into ten districts known as
* Central Cadastral Zone A00
* Garki I District Cadastral Zone A01
* Wuse 1 District Cadastral Zone A02
* Garki II District Cadastral Zone A03
* Asokoro Cadastral Zone A04
* Maitama District Cadastral Zone A05 & A06
* Wuse II Districts (Cadastral Zone A07 "> National Christian
Abuja's Central District , also called Central Area, spans from the
Aso Rock , across the Three Arms Zone, to the southern base of
the inner ring road. It is like the city's spinal cord, dividing it
into the northern sector with Maitama and Wuse, and the southern
sector with Garki and Asokoro. While each district has its own clearly
demarcated commercial and residential sectors, the Central District is
the city's principal Business Zone, where practically all parastatals
and multinational corporations have their offices. An attractive area
in the Central District is the region known as the THREE ARMS ZONE, so
called because it houses the administrative offices of the executive,
legislative and judicial arms of the federal government. A few of the
other sites worth seeing in the area are the federal secretariats
alongside Shehu Shagari Way, Aso Hill, the
Abuja Plant Nursery, Eagle
Square (which has important historic significance, as it was in this
grounds that the present democratic dispensation had its origin on 29
May 1999) and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier across the road facing
it. The National Mosque and National Church of
Nigeria are opposite
each other on either side of Independence Avenue. A well-known
government office is the Ministry of Defense, colloquially nicknamed
The Garki District is the area in the southwest corner of the city,
having the Central District to the north and the Asokoro District to
the east. The district is subdivided into units called "Areas". Garki
uses a distinctive naming convention of "Area" to refer to parts of
Garki. These are designated as Areas 1 to 11. Garki II is used to
differentiate the area from Garki Area 2. Visitors may find this
Garki is presently the principal business district of Abuja. Numerous
buildings of interest are in this area. Some of them include the
General Post Office,
Abuja International Conference Centre along the
busy Herbert Maculay Way, Nicon Luxury Hotel (formally known as Abuja
Sofitel Hotel and Le Meridian), Agura Hotel and Old Federal
Secretariat Complex Buildings (Area 1). A new five-star hotel,
Hawthorn Suites Abuja, is in Garki.
Area 2 is mainly used for residential purposes, although a zoological
garden as well as Garki Shopping Centre are in Area 2. Several banks
and other commercial offices are located along Moshood Abiola Way in
Area 7. The headquarters of the Nigerian Armed Forces – Army,
Airforce and Navy – are all in the Garki District.
The tallest building in this district is the Radio House, which
houses the Federal Ministry of Information and Communications, the
Federal Radio Corporation of
Nigeria (FRCN) and Voice of Nigeria
Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) stations and corporate
headquarters are in Garki. The Federal Capital Development Authority
(FCDA) which oversees and runs the Administration of the Federal
Capital Territory has its offices in Garki.
The Office of the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory,
in Area 10. Other places of note include the Arts and Culture Centre
and The Nigerian Police Mobile Force headquarters in Area 10. The
Abuja Municipal Area Council, which is the local government
administration has its headquarters in Area 10. The new United States
Embassy is in the Garki District.
Wuse District is the northwestern part of the city, with the Maitama
District to its north and the Central District to its south. The
District is numbered Zones 1–8. The Wuse Market is Abuja's principal
market (Zone 5). The second most important post office in the city is
here. This district houses the Sheraton Hotel and Towers (Zone 4),
Ibro International hotel, the Foreign Affairs Ministry Headquarters
(Zone 3) and Nigerian Customs Services Headquarters, Federal Civil
Service Commission (Zone 3), Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC),
National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration (NAFDAC) (Zone 7),
Wuse General Hospital, and the Nigerian Tourism Development
Corporation. Just as Garki District has Garki II, Wuse has Wuse II.
This is distinct from Wuse Zone 2.
Millennium Park in Maitama District
Maitama District is to the north of the city, with the Wuse and
Central Districts lying to its southwest and southeast respectively.
This area is home to the top bracket sections of society and business,
and has the reputation of being very exclusive and very expensive.
Interesting buildings include the Transcorp Hilton Hotel , Nigerian
Communications Commission Headquarters (NCC), National Universities
Commission (NUC), Soil Conservation Complex, and Independent National
Electoral Commission (INEC). The British High Commission is located
Aguiyi Ironsi Way, in Maitama. Also, the Maitama District
Hospital is another notable building in Maitama. Maitama District is
home to many of the European and Asian embassies.
Asokoro District , the doyen of the districts, houses all of the
state's lodges/guest houses. The
ECOWAS secretariat is a focal point
of interest. Asokoro is to the east of Garki District and south of
Central District. It is one of the most exclusive districts of Abuja
and houses virtually all of the federal cabinet ministers; in
addition, the Presidential Palace (commonly referred to as the Aso
Rock) is in Asokoro District. By virtue of this fact, Asokoro is the
most secure area of the city.
Gwarinpa is the last district in the
Abuja Municipal Area Council. It
is a 20-kilometre (12 mi) drive from the central district and contains
the largest single housing estate in Nigeria, the Gwarinpa Housing
Estate. The estate was built by the administration of General Sani
Abacha and is the largest of its kind in Africa. It provides residence
for the majority of the civil servants in federal ministries and
government parastatals . The
ECOWAS Court has an official quarters for
the President and Members of the Court in Gwarinpa.
Durumi District is located southwest of
Abuja and is bordered by
Garki Districts I and II to the northeast. Its borders are the Oladipo
Dia Road to the southwest, the
Nnamdi Azikiwe Express Way to the
northeast, and Ahmadu Bello Way to the southeast.
American International School of Abuja is located in the Durumi
* 88.9 –
Brila FM (Abuja) – sports
* 92.1 – Vision FM
* 92.9 – Kapital FM(FRCN ABUJA)
* 93.5 – ASO Radio
* 94.7 – Rhythm FM (Abuja)
* 95.1 -
Nigeria info FM
* 96.9 – Cool FM (Abuja)
* 98.3 – Hot FM (Abuja)
* 99.5 – Wazobia FM (Abuja)
* 99.9 – Kiss FM (Abuja)
* 100.5 – RayPower FM (Abuja)
* 101.1- Human rights radio
* 104.5 – Love FM (Abuja)
* 106.3- WE FM
* 107.7- Armed Forces FM
Köppen climate classification features a tropical wet
and dry climate (Köppen : Aw). The FCT experiences three weather
conditions annually. This includes a warm, humid rainy season and a
blistering dry season . In between the two, there is a brief interlude
of harmattan occasioned by the northeast trade wind, with the main
feature of dust haze and dryness.
The rainy season begins from April and ends in October, when daytime
temperatures reach 28 °C (82.4 °F) to 30 °C (86.0 °F) and
nighttime lows hover around 22 °C (71.6 °F) to 23 °C (73.4 °F). In
the dry season, daytime temperatures can soar as high as 40 °C (104.0
°F) and nighttime temperatures can dip to 12 °C (53.6 °F). Even the
chilliest nights can be followed by daytime temperatures well above 30
°C (86.0 °F). The high altitudes and undulating terrain of the FCT
act as a moderating influence on the weather of the territory.
Rainfall in the FCT reflects the territory's location on the windward
side of the
Jos Plateau and the zone of rising air masses with the
city receiving frequent rainfall during the rainy season from April to
October every year.
CLIMATE DATA FOR ABUJA
AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F)
AVERAGE LOW °C (°F)
AVERAGE RAINFALL MM (INCHES)
AVERAGE RAINY DAYS
Source: World Meteorological Organization.
The FCT falls within the
Guinean forest-savanna mosaic zone of the
West African sub-region. Patches of rain forest , however, occur in
the Gwagwa plains, especially in the rugged terrain to the south
southeastern parts of the territory, where a landscape of gullies and
rough terrain is found. These areas of the Federal Capital Territory
(FCT) form one of the few surviving occurrences of the mature forest
vegetation in Nigeria.
SKYLINE AND LANDMARKS
Spectators at a football match held in the
Abuja skyline is made up of mostly mid-range and a few tall
buildings. Only recently have tall buildings begun to appear. Most of
the buildings are modern, reflecting that it is a new city.
Plans were made to build skyscrapers such as the Millennium Tower
which is partly completed. This structure looms 170 metres (560 ft)
above the city. The tower is part of a huge cultural development
complex called the
Nigeria National Complex including the Nigeria
Cultural Centre, a 120,000 m2 (1,300,000 sq ft) structure dedicated to
the art and culture of Nigeria. The Cultural Centre and the Millennium
Tower have been designed by the Italian architect
Manfredi Nicoletti .
Landmarks include the Millennium Tower , the Central Bank of Nigeria
Nigerian Presidential Complex , the Ship House, the
National Stadium , National Mosque , the National Church , Aso Rock
Zuma Rock .
Abuja City Gate
Abuja National Mosque
Abuja National Mosque
UNIVERSITIES IN ABUJA
African Institute of Science and Technology
Nigerian Turkish Nile University
Nigerian Turkish Nile University
University of Abuja
* National Open University of
INTERNATIONAL SCHOOLS IN ABUJA
Whiteplains British School , Jabi
American International School of Abuja
* Nigerian-Turkish School
Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport
Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport is the main airport serving
Abuja and the surrounding capital region. It was named after Nigeria's
Nnamdi Azikiwe . The airport has international and
Abuja is on the route of the planned Lagos–
Kano Standard Gauge
Railway , which has been completed between
Kaduna . Trains
Kaduna depart from the Idu Railway Station in Abuja. There is a
motor park at the train station for passengers traveling to the city
centre. A light rail system is now under construction, including a
station at Idu .
PARKS AND OPEN AREAS
Abuja is home to several parks and green areas with the largest one
being Millennium Park . Millennium Park was designed by world-renowned
Manfredi Nicoletti and was officially opened by the United
Elizabeth II in December 2003. Another open area park is
located in Lifecamp Gwarimpa; near the residence of the Minister of
the Federal Capital Territory. The park is located on a slightly
raised hilltop which contains sport facilities like Basketball and
Badminton courts another park is the city park, it is located in wuse
2 and is home to numerous outdoor and indoor attractions such as a 4D
cinema, astro-turf, lawn tennis court, paintball arena and a variety
Abuja has a variety of informal spaces known as "Bush Bars" that
usually, though not always, include a covered area with tables and
chairs where people can sit and have drinks (alcoholic and
non-alcoholic) and sometimes there are snacks such as suya, grilled
catfish, pounded yam, egusi soup and other small items available for
purchase and they are located all over Abuja.
Abuja is served by the Nigerian Postal Service which maintains postal
codes, street names and zones. Postal codes and district names can
also be found on geocodes.com.
TWIN TOWNS – SISTER CITIES
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