Nigeria (/nadri/), officially the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is a sovereign country located in West Africa bordering Niger in the north, Chad in the northeast, Cameroon in the east, and Benin in the west. Its southern coast is on the Gulf of Guinea in the Atlantic Ocean. Nigeria is a federal republic comprising 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, where the capital, Abuja, is located.
A multinational state, Nigeria is inhabited by more than 250 ethnic groups with over 500 distinct languages all identifying with a wide variety of cultures. The three largest ethnic groups are the HausaFulani in the north, Yoruba in the west, and Igbo in the east; comprising over 60% of the total population. The official language of Nigeria is English, chosen to facilitate linguistic unity at the national level, although in practice, Pidgin and the languages of the three largest ethnicities also serve as lingua francas in Nigerian society. Nigeria is divided roughly in half between Christians, who live mostly in the southern part of the country, and Muslims, who live mostly in the north. Nigeria has respectively, the fifth-largest Muslim population in the world and the sixth-largest Christian population in the world, with the constitution ensuring freedom of religion.
A minority of the population practice religions indigenous to Nigeria, such as those native to the Igbo and Yoruba ethnicities, often syncretized with Christianity.
Nigeria has been home to a number of ancient and indigenous pre-colonial states and kingdoms over the millennia. The modern state originated from British colonial rule beginning in the 19th century, and took its present territorial shape with the merging of the Southern Nigeria Protectorate and Northern Nigeria Protectorate in 1914 by Lord Frederick Lugard. The British set up administrative and legal structures while practicing indirect rule through traditional chiefdoms, Nigeria became a formally independent federation on October 1, 1960. It experienced a civil war from 1967 to 1970.
Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa and the seventh most populous country in the world, with an estimated 206 million inhabitants as of late 2019. Nigeria has the third-largest youth population in the world, after India and China, with more than 90 million of its population under the age of eighteen. Nigeria has the largest economy in Africa and is the world's 24th largest economy according to the list by the IMF (2020 estimates), worth more than $500 billion and $1 trillion in terms of nominal GDP and purchasing power parity, respectively. The 2013 debt-to-GDP ratio was 11 percent as of 2019 it has risen to an approximated figure of thirty percent. Nigeria is a lower middle-income economy with a gross national income per capita between $1,026 and $3,995
Nigeria is a member of the MINT group of countries, which are widely seen as the globe's next "BRIC-like" economies. It is also listed among the "Next Eleven" economies set to become among the biggest in the world. Nigeria is a founding member of the African Union and a member of many other international organizations, including the United Nations, the Commonwealth of Nations, the ECOWAS, and OPEC.
"Arise, O Compatriots" is the national anthem of Nigeria. It was adopted in the late 1970s and is the country's second ever national anthem.
It was adopted in 1978 and replaced the previous national anthem, "Nigeria, We Hail Thee".
The lyrics are a combination of words and phrases taken from five of the best entries in a national contest. The words were put to music by the Nigerian Police Band under the directorship of Benedict E. Odiase. Though it has two verses, usually only the first is sung. On some occasions, the second verse is recited as "The National Prayer".