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Geography - People - Economy - Government - Communications - Transportation - Military - Transnational Issues

Country information - Nigeria
Country name - conventional long form : Federal Republic of Nigeria
Country name - conventional short form : Nigeria
Government type : federal republic
Capital - name : Abuja
Capital - time difference : UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
National holiday : Independence Day (National Day), 1 October (1960)
Nationality - noun : Nigerian(s)
Nationality - adjective : Nigerian
Languages : English (official), Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo (Ibo), Fulani
Currency (code) : naira (NGN)
Currency code : NGN
Major infectious diseases - degree of risk : very high
Major infectious diseases - note : highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza has been identified in this country; it poses a negligible risk with extremely rare cases possible among US citizens who have close contact with birds (2008)

Nigeria is located Western Africa, bordering the Gulf of Guinea, between Benin and Cameroon. The climate is varies; equatorial in south, tropical in center, arid in north. The terrain is southern lowlands merge into central hills and plateaus; mountains in southeast, plains in north.


This entry usually highlights major historic events and current issues and may include a statement about one or two key future trends.
Background : British influence and control over what would become Nigeria grew through the 19th century. A series of constitutions after World War II granted Nigeria greater autonomy; independence came in 1960. Following nearly 16 years of military rule, a new constitution was adopted in 1999, and a peaceful transition to civilian government was completed. The government continues to face the daunting task of reforming a petroleum-based economy, whose revenues have been squandered through corruption and mismanagement, and institutionalizing democracy. In addition, Nigeria continues to experience longstanding ethnic and religious tensions. Although both the 2003 and 2007 presidential elections were marred by significant irregularities and violence, Nigeria is currently experiencing its longest period of civilian rule since independence. The general elections of April 2007 marked the first civilian-to-civilian transfer of power in the country's history.

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