Enugu is a state located in southeastern Nigeria. The state was created in 1991 and its capital and largest city is Enugu. It is known for its rich coal deposits and has a population of approximately 3.2 million people. The official language is English and the main ethnic groups are the Igbo and their sub-groups. The state is also known for its scenic beauty, with the Udi Hills and the Enugu Escarpment being popular tourist attractions.
Enugu State has a rich history that dates back to the pre-colonial era. The area was originally inhabited by the Nri Kingdom, which was known for its advanced political and social systems. During the colonial period, the state became a center for British administration and commerce, with coal mining being the main source of economic activity.
In the early 20th century, the city of Enugu became a center of resistance to British rule, with several uprisings and protests taking place. Following Nigeria's independence in 1960, Enugu became the capital of the Eastern Region, one of Nigeria's three regions at the time. The state was later divided into several smaller states, including Anambra and Imo, before eventually being reconstituted as Enugu State in 1991.
Since then, Enugu State has continued to develop economically and socially, with efforts being made to promote tourism, agriculture, and other key industries. Despite its rich history and cultural heritage, Enugu State still faces a number of challenges, including poverty, unemployment, and underdevelopment in rural areas.
Enugu State is located in southeastern Nigeria and is bordered by Abia State to the east, Ebonyi State to the southeast, and Benue State to the north. It is situated on the plateau of the southeastern region of Nigeria and has an elevation of over 1,200 meters above sea level. The state covers an area of approximately 1,450 square kilometers and its capital and largest city, Enugu, is located in the center of the state.
The people of Enugu State are primarily of the Igbo ethnic group and their sub-groups. The Igbo are known for their rich cultural heritage, including music, dance, art, and festivals. The people of Enugu are also known for their entrepreneurial spirit and their strong sense of community.
Other ethnic groups found in Enugu State include the Idoma, Tiv, and Ezeagu. There is also a significant presence of other ethnic groups from across Nigeria, including Hausa, Yoruba, and Ijaw, due to the state's role as a hub for trade and commerce.
The people of Enugu are predominantly Christian, with a significant minority of Muslims, and there are also smaller communities of traditional African religious practitioners. Despite their diverse backgrounds, the people of Enugu State have a strong sense of unity and often work together to achieve common goals.
The majority of the people in Enugu State are from the Igbo ethnic group, which is one of the largest ethnic groups in Nigeria. The Igbo have a rich cultural heritage, including a strong oral tradition, music, dance, and festivals. The Igbo are also known for their entrepreneurial spirit and their strong sense of community.
In addition to the Igbo, there are also smaller communities of other ethnic groups in Enugu State, including the Idoma, Tiv, and Ezeagu. These communities have their own unique cultures, languages, and traditions that contribute to the diversity and richness of Enugu State's cultural heritage.
It is worth noting that the term "tribe" is often considered an outdated and politically incorrect term to describe ethnic groups, as it can perpetuate stereotypes and reinforce division between different communities. Instead, it is more appropriate to refer to these groups as ethnic groups or communities.
Enugu State has a diverse economy, with several key sectors including agriculture, mining, manufacturing, trade, and services. Some of the major trade and economic activities in the state include:
Agriculture: Enugu State is known for its fertile soil and favorable climate, making it an important agricultural region. The state is a major producer of crops such as yams, cassava, maize, and palm oil.
Mining: Enugu State is famous for its rich coal deposits and is one of the largest coal-producing states in Nigeria. The coal industry is a major source of employment and income for the state, with coal being used for both domestic consumption and export.
Manufacturing: Enugu State has a growing manufacturing sector, with industries producing goods such as textiles, pharmaceuticals, and consumer goods.
Trade: Enugu State is a major commercial center in southeastern Nigeria, with a thriving market and a growing retail sector. The state is known for its trade fairs, where local and foreign businesses come together to showcase their products and services.
Services: The service sector is an important part of the economy of Enugu State, with a growing financial sector, as well as healthcare, education, and tourism services.
Overall, Enugu State is an important contributor to the Nigerian economy and is known for its entrepreneurial spirit, natural resources, and rich cultural heritage.
Enugu State has a rich cultural heritage, reflecting the diverse backgrounds and traditions of its people. The state is known for its strong oral tradition, music, dance, and festivals, which are an important part of its cultural identity.
Oral tradition: The Igbo people, who make up the majority of Enugu State's population, have a rich oral tradition, passed down from generation to generation through storytelling, proverbs, and folktales.
Music and dance: Music and dance are an integral part of the cultural heritage of Enugu State, with traditional and modern styles coexisting and influencing each other. The state is known for its highlife music, a popular genre that originated in the region, as well as its traditional dances, such as the Igbo dance, the Ofufe, and the Ogene.
Festivals: Enugu State is known for its vibrant festivals, which celebrate the diversity of its cultural heritage. Some of the most well-known festivals include the New Yam Festival, the Ofufe Festival, and the Mmanwu Festival, which are celebrated with music, dance, food, and other cultural activities.
Overall, the cultural heritage of Enugu State is an important part of its identity and plays a crucial role in bringing the community together and preserving its traditions and values.
Enugu State is known for its vibrant festivals, which celebrate the diversity of its cultural heritage. Some of the most well-known festivals in the state include:
New Yam Festival (Iri-ji): This festival is celebrated by the Igbo people to mark the end of the yam harvest and the beginning of the new agricultural season. The festival is marked by feasting, music, and dance, as well as the offering of thanks to the gods for a successful harvest.
Ofufe Festival: This festival is celebrated by the people of Nsukka and is dedicated to the goddess Ofufe, who is believed to protect the community and ensure a bountiful harvest. The festival features music, dance, and traditional rituals, including the offering of food and other sacrifices.
Mmanwu Festival: This festival is held annually in Enugu and is one of the most important cultural events in the state. The festival is a celebration of traditional masks and masquerade performances, with participants dressing up in elaborate costumes and performing dances and other rituals.
Ezeagu Cultural Festival: This festival is held annually in Ezeagu and is dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the cultural heritage of the Ezeagu people. The festival features music, dance, and traditional rituals, as well as a showcase of local arts and crafts.
These festivals are an important part of the cultural heritage of Enugu State and provide an opportunity for the community to come together, celebrate their traditions and values, and showcase their rich cultural heritage to the wider world.
Enugu State is home to several notable places, including historic sites, natural attractions, and cultural landmarks. Some of the most well-known places in the state include:
Coal City Stadium: This is a multi-purpose stadium located in Enugu, which is used for sporting events and other large gatherings.
Nike Lake Resort: This is a popular tourist destination located in Enugu, known for its natural beauty, recreational facilities, and serene atmosphere.
The Cathedral of the Good Shepherd: This is a historic Roman Catholic cathedral located in Enugu, which is known for its architectural style and religious significance.
Nsukka Cultural Centre: This cultural center is located in Nsukka and is dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the cultural heritage of the Nsukka people. The center features a museum, an art gallery, and a theater.
Amodu Tijani Cultural Centre: This cultural center is located in Awgu and is dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the cultural heritage of the Awgu people. The center features a museum, an art gallery, and a theater.
Udi Hills: This is a range of hills located in Udi, known for its scenic beauty and natural attractions, including hiking trails and picnic spots.
Oji River: This river is located in Oji River Local Government Area and is known for its scenic beauty and recreational opportunities, including fishing and boating.
These places are an important part of the cultural and natural heritage of Enugu State and are popular with both local residents and visitors to the state.
Enugu State has produced many notable individuals who have made significant contributions in various fields, including politics, arts, culture, sports, and academics. Some of the most well-known people from Enugu State include:
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: She is a world-renowned author and literary figure, best known for her novels "Purple Hibiscus" and "Half of a Yellow Sun."
Chika Onyeani: He is a publisher and author who is known for his novel "Capitalist Nigger: The Road to Success."
Pius Anyim: He is a former Nigerian Senator and Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
Victor Ikpeba: He is a retired Nigerian footballer who played for clubs in Nigeria, Belgium, and France, and represented Nigeria in international competitions.
Okey Ndibe: He is a Nigerian novelist and essayist who has written several novels, including "Arrows of Rain" and "Foreign Gods, Inc."
Patrick Odoh: He is a former Nigerian footballer who played for clubs in Nigeria, Belgium, and France, and represented Nigeria in international competitions.
Kanayo F. Nwanze: He is a Nigerian agricultural economist and administrator who served as the President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) from 2009 to 2017.
These individuals are important figures in Enugu State and have made a lasting impact on the state and the wider world, and are an inspiration to many.
Enugu State, like many other states in Nigeria, has a traditional leadership structure that includes traditional rulers, also known as kings or chiefs. Some of the most well-known traditional rulers in Enugu State include:
Igwe Dr. P.C. Aniagolu: He is the Igwe (Traditional Ruler) of Nsukka, and has served in this role for many years.
Igwe Mike Idoko: He is the traditional ruler of Ezeagu LGA and has served in this role for many years.
Igwe Dr. Emmanuel U. Iloh: He is the traditional ruler of Nkanu West LGA and has served in this role for many years.
Igwe Alex Onyido: He is the traditional ruler of Igbo-Eze South LGA and has served in this role for many years.
Igwe Prof. Romanus Ikegwuonu: He is the traditional ruler of Oji River LGA and has served in this role for many years.
These traditional rulers play a significant role in the cultural and political life of Enugu State and are respected members of their communities. They are involved in the resolution of disputes and the preservation of cultural traditions and customs.
Enugu State is home to several notable educational institutions, including universities, colleges, and schools. Some of the most well-known educational institutions in the state include:
University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN): This is one of the largest and most prestigious universities in Nigeria, with a strong tradition of academic excellence.
Institute of Management and Technology (IMT), Enugu: This is a leading polytechnic institution in Nigeria, offering programs in engineering, science, and technology.
Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT): This university is located in Enugu and is known for its strong programs in engineering, science, and technology.
College of Education, Nsukka: This is one of the leading colleges of education in Nigeria, offering programs in teacher training and education.
Institute of Technology, Agbani (ITA): This institution is located in Agbani and is known for its strong programs in engineering, science, and technology.
The Women's Development Centre (WDC), Enugu: This is a leading institution in Nigeria that is dedicated to the education and empowerment of women.
Forest Gate College, Enugu: This is a prestigious private school that is known for its high-quality education and excellent facilities.
These educational institutions play a significant role in the development of Enugu State by providing quality education and training to students, and preparing them for successful careers.
Enugu state is a state located in the southeastern region of Nigeria. It was created vide a military decree on the 27th of August, 1991. This came about after years of agitation concerning injustice and marginalization by the Wawa leaders and people. No wonder it is known as the “Coal city-state or Wawa state.” But for the youth and Generation Z humans, it is popularly known as “042 cities.” 042 is the NITEL Telephone Area Code for Enugu. The youth decided to take a page out of the book of pop culture in the U.S where the area codes became a nickname for the city.
It is located at the foot of the Udi plateau. The state shares borders with Abia state and Imo state to the south, Ebonyi state to the east, Benue State to the northeast, Kogi state to the northwest, and Anambra state to the west.
Its name comes from the traditional Igbo words enu ugwu, meaning “at the top of the hill.” This is very appropriate as Enugu has a lot of hills and valleys. On weekends, you can find a number of hiking groups hiking through the hills and working up a sweat. They finally end up on top of the hills admiring the city from such a coveted angle.
In 2015, the Rockefeller Foundation named Enugu state the 65th Most Resilient City in the world 2015. That’s not too bad for a state that was barely 30 years old at the time. At least, I think so.
Population censuses are not regularly carried out in Nigeria. Sad but true. In 1991, the population of Enugu state was 2,125,068. In 2006, the population was 3,267,837. The males were 1,596,042 and the females were 1,671,795. In 2016, the National Population Commission of Nigeria assumed the same rate of growth for all Local Government Areas (LGAs) within the state and projected about 4,411,100 people. It is however pertinent to remember that the population figures for Nigeria display high error rates and that census results are always clashing. In other words, take this with less than a pinch of salt.
The cost of living is cheap and affordable compared to other parts of the country. It is home to numerous hotels, including the Nike Lake Resort Hotel, a five-star resort located next to the Nike Lake and once considered one of the jewels of Nigeria. I have personally been there once and the view is amazing. The food, leisure facilities, and especially the boating expeditions give off the “you should definitely come again” vibe. Besides, it is historically relevant since it was the site used to shelter the Biafran army headquarters for the Igbos during the tragic civil war.
The beautiful landscapes of Enugu filled with a variety of hills, lakes, caves, springs, waterfalls, and forests is something one gets to enjoy outside the towns. For instance, the Milken hills, located at Ngwo in the Enugu North Local Government Area, offer a breath-taking view of Enugu, especially at dawn and dusk. If you’re fond of adventuring and are a great descendant of Indiana Jones, several tunnels can be found underneath the hills. Besides, it’s a great spot for mountaineering activities since the Iva valley lies beneath it. I have acrophobia so I’ll pass on this one.
The South East and festivals are like, in Naeto C’s words, “five and six.” Since Enugu is home to the Igbos, there are important annual traditional festivals that are observed, such as the New Yam festival and the Mmanwu (means “spirits of the dead”) festival. Regarding the latter, various displays by masquerades are seen and enjoyed. The spirits are said to inhabit the masquerades as the earthly bodies and they should never be unmasked. But, seeing those masquerades on the road with their raffia whips is a different thing altogether