Editor's note: Nigeria’s journey as an independent country began on October 1, 1960, but its history dates back far before the colonial era. Nigeria popularly referred to as the ‘giant of Africa’ is one of the most populous nation in the world.
Jegede Joseph in this piece highlights 20 reasons to celebrate Nigeria after 57 years of gaining independence despite the number of reasons not to.
1960 would remain significant to many african countries, most especially the 'giant' of the African continent, Nigeria.
There is a lot of obvious reason not to celebrate with the country in a state many refer to as a 'work in progress', an average Nigerian would ask is there any reason to celebrate Nigeria at 57?
Significantly, there are numerous reasons Nigeria like other African why we need to celebrate independence not necessarily for the fun of it, but to ponder and reflect on the gains of independence.
Most especially in a time when our unity as a nation is grossly affected by glooming challenges. There are numerous reasons to celebrate Nigeria, but let's consider this 20 facts:
1. Nigeria is the most populated black nation in the world, you cannot deny the strength of a mighty nation like Nigeria, and over 70% of this population are young people between the age of 0-25years.
2. Nigerians are 1/5th the total population of Black Africa, still talking on human resource strength, we are the giant of Africa.
3. Nigeria is one of the fastest growing economies in the world, with the International Monetary Fund projections and other economic institutions, the fact still remain arguable. Nigeria is and will be the world’s fastest-growing Entertainment and Media industry between 2017– 2021.
4. Nigeria remains the first African country to win the Olympic Gold Medal in football, football has been considered a national sport. Watching the national football team win is one of the best moments for a Nigerian.
5. Nigeria with 521 languages is the fourth countries on the list of countries with languages in the world. This includes 510 living languages, two second languages without native speakers and 9 extinct languages. This is amazing to hear @57
6. Nigerians remain the most educated diaspora community in America, we raise the flag high in every part of the world.
7. Nigeria has the highest rate of twin births in the world, compared to any other country. Yoruba and their bloodlines worldwide have the highest rate of twinning (having twins) in the world. And the world is talking about our population, when thy don't know how to give birth to twins. Let the twinning continue.
8. Nigeria is among the countries with the largest proven reserves of petroleum, in the world. We won't depend on oil alone to be build an efficient economy, but we have abundance of it.
9. We have the second largest delta in the world. With the Niger-Delta region we can boast of this.
10. The richest man in Africa, is a Nigerian, forget the tribe or the religion, He is Alike Dangote, founder of Dangote Group.
11. River Niger is the largest river in West Africa, providing sources of livelihood to thousands of Africans daily.
12. The state of Taraba has more languages than at least 30 countries in the world combined, you can imagine the dynamic nature of Nigeria.
13. Cross River State has the largest diversity of Butterflies in the world, not just in Africa. So when you want different breeds of butterflies you now where to go.
14. We have 7% of all languages in the world combined. Our strength is really in our diversity.
15.The Ancient Benin wall are the longest ancient work enclosing 500 communities at a distance of 6500 sq.km, not even the Great Walls of China can beat this. We ruled the ancient world through our arts and craft, we can and we need to start ruling our world.
16. Nigeria is said to have the highest paid legislators in the world, this might be controversial, but yes we do, just accept it, we are working on amending the pay too not just the constitution.
17. Nigeria has an average of 1.5 million applicants to the University every year, wow! Nigerians are educated and they love to be. More than 68% of Nigerians are literate.
18. The first African country to eradicate Ebola Virus is Nigeria. This was the time when we rolled up our sleeves and fought a common threat, regardless of who needs help, ethnicity and religion was not in the question.
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19. The Nigerian film industry, Nollywood, is the second largest in the world in terms of output, producing between 1000 to 2000 films annually with an annual turnover of around $250million. Combining all other adjunct film production would be more.
20. Nigeria was ranked by Transparency International as the 136th the least country out of 176 on the list, we are not working and fighting on corruption, but we still have 40 countries behind us. We are getting there.
As we celebrate this 57th Independence anniversary, we have a lot of reason to be united as a country and appreciate what we have while we are working towards the perfect picture, remember Rome was not fully built in 57years, we are getting there, play your own role as a citizen too.
NB: No ethnic biases was considered in this write-up...just One Nigeria.
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How Nigerians celebrated the 57th Independence anniversary in Umuahia - on NAIJ.com TV.