Arts and Culture

THE PEOPLE OF KOGI STATE

The people of Kogi are found in the central region (Middle-Belt) of Nigeria. The state is popularly called the Confluence State because of the confluence of River Niger and River Benue at its Capital, Lokoja. Lokoja was the first administrative capital of modern day Nigeria. Kogi State was created on 27th of August 1991. Its total population according to the 2006 population census is 3, 314, 043. The people of Kogi are spread out across 21 Local Government Areas namely; Adavi, Ajaokuta, Ankpa, Bassa, Dekina, Ibaji, Idah, Igalamela-Odolu, Ijumu, Kabba/Bunu, Kotori Karfe, Lokoja, Mopa-Muro, Ofu, Ogoni/Magongo, Okehi, Okene, Olamaboro, Omala, Yagba East and Yagba West. There are three Federal Constituencies in Kogi State. They are Kogi East, Kogi West and Kogi Central. The major ethnic groups are Igala, Ebira, and Okun.

The People Of Kogi State 2
An Aereal View of Central Kogi

MAJOR OCCUPATION

Agriculture is the major component of the state economy. The people grow food and cash crops such as coffee, palm oil, cashew, groundnut, maize, cassava, yam, rice and melon. There are also fishing activities in the riverine areas such as Lokoja, Idah, Baji. The state also has coal, petroleum, steel and other mineral industries. The state is home to the largest iron and steel industry in Nigeria known as the Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited and one of the largest cement factories in Africa, the Obajana Cement Factory.

TRANSPORT AND COMMUNICATIONS

Kogi state is just 2 hours drive from the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. It therefore connects the FCT with 22 Southern States. Being in close proximity to the Federal Capital Territory, Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport serves as the gateway for air travelers from and to the state. Good telecommunications services are available in the state.

NOTABLE PEOPLE

People of Kogi state are renowned and well known in their various fields. Notable among them are; Rt. Hon. Chief S.A Ajayi OFR, Darey-Art Alade (musician), Joseph Benjamin (Nollywood actor), Shola Ameobi (footballer), Halima Abubakar (Nollywood actress), Senator Dino Melaye (politician), Praiz (musician), Mercy Johnson (Nollywood actress), Jumai Joseph, Debie Rise, Sunday Bada (athlete), Jaywon (musician) and Smart Adeyemi (politician).

FACT

Do you know that the name ‘Nigeria’ was coined in Lokoja by Flora Shaw, the future wife of Baron Lugard, a British colonial administrator, while gazing out at the River Niger.

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