Lokoja

About Lokoja

Lokoja is a city in Kogi state and doubles as the state’s capital. The city which is very famous for being the confluence point of the Niger and Benue Rivers has several suburbs which include Felele, Adankolo, Ganaja, and Otokiti. Indigenous tribes found in Lokoja city include the Bassa Nge, Ebira, Yoruba and Igala ethnic groups. Popular districts in Lokoja include Adankolo, Ahubana, Lokon-Goma, Meme bridge, Sarkin Noma, Kakanda, Kupa, Oworo, Ogbon Gboro, Banda, and Gbedumagi. Tertiary institutions found in Lokoja include the Salem University, Kogi state Polytechnic, Federal University Lokoja, and the National Open University of Nigeria.

Languages spoken in Lokoja include Hausa, Igala and the English languages while the prominent religions include Christianity and Islam. Popular means of transportation in Lokoja include the use of tricycles and taxicabs. Popular city landmarks found in Lokoja include the World war 1 cenotaph, the European Cemetery, Mount Patti, National Museum of Colonial History, Holy Trinity School, Lugard Beach,  Treasures Restaurant, Iron Liberty, and the site for the hosting of the Union Jack which is the official British flag used by Nigeria in the years prior to independence. Health institutions found in Lokoja include the Rehoboth hospital, Kogi state specalist hospital, Niger hospital, Federal Medical Center, MDR Lighthouse Medical Center, Hill Crest Clinics, and Maternity, Gabann Clinic and Maternity, Cervinet Hospital, Poly Hospital, and the Ankuri Hospital.


GEOGRAPHY

The city of Lokoja has a total area of about 3180 km squared and falls under the Tropical Savannah Climate. The two predominant seasons in Lokoja are the rainy and dry seasons with average annual precipitation at 1850mm.

Humidity in Lokoja is at about 53 percent while average temperature is estimated at 27 degrees centigrade. Lokoja lies on the banks of two of Nigeria’s biggest rivers which are the Rivers Niger and Benue and these two rivers meet at the confluence point located within the city.


ECONOMY

Lokoja is known as an Agricultural and commercial town. Crops grown in Lokoja include Yam, Cassava, rice and vegetables. Commerce in Lokoja is also vibrant with markets such as the New Market, Natako international market, Lokoja International market and the Kpata fish Market attracting thousands of buyers and sellers on a daily basis.

Tourism and mining also add to the economy of Lokoja with the city known to have minerals such as petroleum, coal, iron and limestone.


HISTORY

The earliest settlers in the town of Lokoja were the Oworo people of the Yoruba tribe who migrated to lokjoja from Ile-ife. The Hausa and the Nupe migrated to the area because of trade and the city’s proximity to the River Niger and Benue Banks.

The present day city of Lokoja was established in the year 1857 by a British explorer known as William Baikie and the city was the capital of the defunct British Northern Nigeria Protectorate. Lord Frederick Lugard also governed Nigeria from the city of Lokoja.

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