See the 6 Reasons Why Is Nigeria is The Giant Of Africa. A giant is someone or a thing of unusually great size, power, importance, etc. Also, a giant is an individual or a thing that is greater or more eminent than others around it; a giant is generally known and accepted to be unusually big and extra strong.
With this definition in mind, it becomes much easier to understand why Nigeria is referred to as the giant of Africa. As a matter of fact, this implies that being referred to as the giant of Africa by other countries in Africa means Nigeria is generally accepted and known to be greater, more eminent, more important, more powerful, unusually big and strong when compared to other countries in Africa. It is subconsciously believed by Africans both in living in Africa and those in diaspora that Africa’s success is dependent on Nigeria’s success.
This subconscious belief is due to many reasons. Among them are the fact that Nigeria had a number of established civilizations that were developed independent of the arrival of the European colonialists, some of them were the Oyo and Benin empires. However, a much stronger reason the rest of Africa looks up to Nigeria as the giant of Africa, is the believe that present day Nigeria is occupied by descendants of the builders of the ancient civilization of Kenet known presently as Egypt.
The facts suggest that the knowledge applied in building the ancient pyramids of Egypt was also applied by their descendants in building the ancient civilizations of Oyo and Benin after a mass movement of people from present day Egypt due to threats of annihilation.
The title “giant of Africa” is a very prestigious one to be given any country on the African continent, the prestige of this title has made Nigerians and non-Nigerians alike wonder what it is about Nigeria that makes her the Giant of Africa. Although the metaphor “Giant of Africa” was given to Nigeria majorly because Nigeria possess the largest population in Africa (a population of over 180 million people). However, this metaphor also applies to other aspects apart from population. There are quite a number of convincing reasons why Nigeria is referred to as the giant of Africa, some of them are
- Her Population
- Her Military Strength
- Her Abundant Human and Natural Resources
- Nigeria possesses Africa’s largest university educated population
- Nigeria’s “big brother” role in general
- Nigeria has Africa’s biggest economy
1. Nigerian Population:
As at December, 2016, Nigeria is estimated to have a population of over 180 million, thus making her to most populous black nation on earth and the 8th most populous nation in the world after Brazil, China, Russia, The United States of America, India, Pakistan and Indonesia.
Apart from being the most populous country in Africa and the 8th most populous country in the world, Nigeria’s population is one of the fastest growing populations in the world.
One major significance of the large population of Nigeria in relation to other African countries is that it makes her a “giant” when compared to other African countries, this is as a result of her size.
See the: Top 10 Cities In Nigeria By Population
2. Nigerian Military Strength:
The Nigerian military is number four on the list of African countries with very strong military forces after Egypt, Algeria and South-Africa, it also occupies the 41st position on a global military poll. With a rough strength of 130,000, about 32,200 in reserve, the Nigerian military has been involved in one civil war( 1967-1970) and several peace keeping missions on the continent of Africa and beyond.
The Nigerian military boasts of 148 tanks, 1,420 Armoured Fighting Vehicles(AFVs), 25 Self-Propelled Guns(SPGs),339 Towed Artillery, 30 Multiple -Launch Rocket Systems(MLRSs), 98 Total Aircrafts,9 Attack Helicopters,35 Trainer Aircraft, 38 Helicopters, 42 Transport Aircrafts, 10 Fixed Wing Attack Aircraft, 2 Frigates, and 12 Coastal Defense Crafts.
Although, as compared to other world super-powers, Nigeria is down the tree when it comes to the strength of its military. However, when compared to other African countries excluding Egypt, Algeria, and South-Africa, the Nigerian armed forces is a force to be reckoned with.
This can be seen in her successful peace keeping missions but in the West African region (Liberia, Sierra-Leone) and in Africa at large (Sudan).
Read: How to Join The Nigerian Army
3. Her Abundant Human and Natural Resources:
Nigeria is heavily endowed with a very wide variety of natural resources, ranging from petroleum to precious metals. The abundant presence of natural resources in Nigeria has attracted lots of investors, hereby serving as a strong source of economic strength to the country. The presence of abundant natural resources in Nigeria mixed with abundant human resources cannot be equaled by any other country on the African continent.
4. Nigeria Possesses Africa’s Largest University Educated Population:
Nigeria’s population of university educated people is about 35 million, making it the African country with the largest population of university educated people. Translates into a huge pool of human resources, as it is difficult to find a country in which Nigerian professionals are not present in.
5. Nigeria’s Big Brother Role in African:
Nigeria was the first country among those affected to effectively eradicate the effect of the Ebola virus. After eliminating the virus in Nigeria, Nigeria offered help to other African countries that were also affected with the Ebola virus. In Sierra Leone alone 100 volunteers arrived from Nigeria and 76 others arrived in Liberia.
The incidence of Ebola outbreak in West Africa further brings to light Nigeria’s position as the giant of Africa. Nigeria’s quick responses, intense and rapid contact tracing played a very positive role in effectively curbing the effect of the Ebola virus in West Africa.
Ebola came into Nigeria through the arrival of Liberian-American, Patrick Sawyer on the 20th of July, 2014. Ebola came into Nigeria in July and by September had been completely handled by the ministry of health in Nigeria.
Read the : The Role of Nigeria in ECOMOG Formation and Sustainability
6. Africa’s Biggest Economy:
Nigeria at the moment is the biggest economy in Africa ahead of both Egypt and South Africa with a GDP of 415.08 billion dollars. Although a drop in GDP was experienced from the GDP in 2015 which was 493.83 billion dollars.
Nigeria still maintains the number one spot as the biggest economy in Africa. These are the reasons and more why Nigeria is referred to as the giant of Africa.
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