Geopolitical Zones In Nigeria & Their States

Nigeria is a very large country which is made of various people from different tribes. Apart from tribes and languages, the country is grouped into 6 geopolitical zones and these zones are made up of several states out of the 36 States we have in Nigeria.

Are you interested in knowing the 6 geopolitical zones in Nigeria? If yes, then continue reading as we will be sharing a list of these geopolitical zones, their states and economic importance to Nigeria in a moment.

geopolitical zones in nigeria

The 6 geopolitical zones in Nigeria is a major division of modern-day Nigeria. These zones were created during the regime of the then president of Nigeria – General Sani Abacha.

Another thing you should know about these geopolitical zones is that these zones were not entirely carved out based on geographic location. The 6 geopolitical zones in Nigeria were made up of states with similar ethnic groups, and/or common political history.

Each state in Nigeria belongs to one geopolitical zone or the other and educational, economic and political resources are often shared across these zones.

These geopolitical zones were created because the government needed to merge similar groups for effective allocation of resources in the country.

Now that you have known the history and uses for the geopolitical zones in the country, let’s take a look at these zones and the Nigerian states that fall under them.

What Are The 6 Geopolitical Zones In Nigeria?

Right now, the 6 geopolitical zones we have in Nigeria are:

  • North East
  • North West
  • North Central
  • South South
  • South East
  • South West
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Geopolitical Zones In Nigeria & Their States Explained

1) North East

The North-East geopolitical zone of Nigeria is made up of 6 states, which includes Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba, and Yobe state.

This geopolitical zone has fewer natural resources when compared to other zones like the South-South and South East. The North East is also a mixture of individuals of many tribes who speak different languages.

Another thing you should know about this geopolitical zone is that there is a lot of pastoral farming and cattle raring amongst its inhabitants. The region is mostly known for farming and the majority of people residing there are either into one type of farming or another.

Major economic activities in the North-East geopolitical zone include Farming, Fishing, Livestock production/rearing and Mining. Some of the ethnic groups found in this zone include Fulani, Fulfulde, Babur, Kanuri, Tangalawaja, Balewa, Tiv and Mumuye.

Major economic activities in the North-West geopolitical zone are Farming, Fishing, Livestock Production/Rearing & Mining. This zone is dominated by the Fulanis and Sharia law is practized here.

2) North West

The North West is another major geopolitical zone in Northen Nigeria and it has an estimated population of more than 41 million people. It is the most populated geopolitical zone in the country and it covers more than one-quarter of the current population of Nigeria.

It is made up of 7 states which include Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Sokoto & Zamfara states. Islam is the main religion practised in this region and it is closely followed by Christianity which is mostly practised in Southern Kaduna and a handful of traditional worshippers.

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3) North Central (Middle Belt)

The North Central geopolitical zone in Nigeria is often referred to as the Middle Belt. It is made up of 6 states which include Benue, Kogi, Kwara, Nassarawa, Niger, Plateau, and Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory – Abuja.

Lands in this geopolitical zone are very fertile and most inhabitants are into farming. The Middle Belt is known for farming and they are the highest producer of food in the whole of Nigeria.

Christianity is a very popular religion in this zone with Islam in the second position and just a few traditional worshippers. Language is not a major barrier in this region as people residing here understand themselves well.

Major economic activities in the North Central or Middle belt zone are Farming, Mining, Fishing, Hunting, Trading, Weaving, Blacksmithing, Dying, Mat Making and this zone has an estimated population of around 20.1 million inhabitants.

4) South South (Niger Delta)

The South-South geopolitical zone is the most popular zone in southern Nigeria. It is made up of riverine areas and states and these areas are known as Niger Delta.

This zone is made up of 7 states which include Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross-River, Delta, Edo and Rivers states. This region is famous for its vast natural resources with Oil and Gas being the major ones.

All states in this region are Oil producing states with no exception and these states are very wealthy when compared to their counterparts in other geopolitical zones.

Christianity is the major religion in this zone with a handful of Muslims and traditional worshippers. Major economic activities in the South-South zone include Crude-oil Mining and Refining, Crop Farming, Fishing, Trading, Banking & Sea Port Business.

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Some of the dominant tribes in south-south Nigeria include Ejagham, Annang, Efik, Ibibio, Ikwere, Ogoni, Itsekiri, Urhobo, Essan, Bini, and Ijaw.

5) South East

The South East is another popular geopolitical zone in Nigeria. It is mostly dominated by Igbos as well as a handful of other tribes.

This zone consists of 5 states which include Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Enugu and Imo state. Inhabitants of this geopolitical zone are mostly farmers and businessmen and the South East is known as the zone with the highest number of wealthy Nigerians till date because of the enterprising nature of people from the states in this zone.

Christianity is a major religion here and other religions like Islam and the African Traditional religion are practised by few of its inhabitants. Major economic activities in this geopolitical zone include Farming, Fishing, Mining, Trading, Business & Local Manufacturing.

6) South West

The South-West geopolitical zone is another zone in Southern Nigeria. It is made up of 6 Yoruba-speaking states which include Ekiti, Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Osun and Oyo states.

This zone has an estimated population of around 30 Million+ people and states in this region are some of the most developed in the country. The South Western zone is also very balanced when it comes to religion as Christianity, Islam and the African Traditional religion are well represented.

Major economic activities in the South Western geopolitical zone are Trading, Farming, Fighting & Entrepreneurship. Yoruba is the most spoken language in this region with no major rival except English which is the official language in Nigeria and Pidgin.

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