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Did You Know: Lagos state is the Smallest state in Nigeria?

Lagos is popular…and populous. In fact, it is arguably Nigeria’s most viable and economically important state. Yet, as popular and populous as Lagos state is, it is actually the smallest state in Nigeria, in terms of surface area. In more specific terms, Lagos state is only about 3,345 km2 surface area (though some sources argue for the land mass figure of 3,577 km2), making it the smallest, in area, of the 36 states of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.[1]

Lagos state is located in the South West geopolitical zone of Nigeria and was created on the 27th of May 1967, with Ikeja serving as its capital. On its boundaries are Ogun state on the north and east and the Republic of Benin on its west. The southern borders is lined by the Atlantic Ocean, and because of its closeness to this massive water body, twenty-two per cent (22%) of its 3,345 km2 are Lagoons and Creeks.

Other Interesting Facts about Lagos

  • Lagos is the most populous city in the whole of Nigeria
  • Lagos is a major economic centre of Nigeria. It is considered as a would-be fifth larget economy in Africa if it were a country.[2]
  • Lagos is divided into five (5) administrative divisions which are further divided into twenty (20) Local Government Areas.
  • In 2007, the Lagos state house of assembly adopted Yoruba as the second recognized language after English for debates in the house of assembly.
  • Although Lagos is considered a Yoruba-speaking state, it is however in reality, a socio-cultural melting pot that includes Nigerians from different quarters of the country, as well as foreigners’ different parts of the world.
  • The tallest building in West Africa, NECOM House and Towers is located in Lagos state. The building is located at about 160m above the city.
  • Eighty per cent (80%) of Nigeria’s imports are handled by ports authority in Lagos. This could be attributed to the proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, which borders Lagos to the South West. This port of Lagos is also considered as one of the top ten ports in Africa.
  • The longest bridge in Africa, the third mainland bridge is also found in Lagos. This bridge measures nothing less than 11.8kmlong.
  • Lagos also has a very large floating habitation called ‘Makoko’. Transportation to and fro this habitation is mainly by waterways. This is one of the very few uniquely set up cities in Nigeria.
  • Nollywood, one of the largest filming industries in the world has its hub in Lagos. Most of the movies are centered in and about Lagos. In addition, Lagos provides a great vista of opportunities for Nigeria’s entertainment industry.
  • Arguably, Lagos is regarded as the home of most millionaires in Nigeria than any other part of the country. It is regarded as third after Johannesburg in South Africa and Cairo in Egypt.[3]

[1] accessed 09/01/2019

[2] John M.O. Ekundayo (2013), Out of Africa: Fashola: Reinventing Servant Leadership to Engender Nigeria’s Transformation (np:Authorhouse), p.135

[3] accessed 09/01/2019


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Jeremiah Aluwong

Jeremiah is a scholar and a poet. He has a keen eye for studying the world and is passionate about people. He tweets at @jeremiahaluwong.

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