South-eastern Nigeria was one of the initial 12 states created during the Nigerian Civil War, which later broke into the present Akwa Ibom State and Cross River State. South-east became the name of one of the six geo-political zones in the country in the 1990s consisting of Abia State, Anambra State, Ebonyi State, Enugu State and Imo State. The local language in this region is Igbo.
Before the British colonial government, South-eastern Nigeria was home to many ethnic groups such as the Igbo, Ijaw, Ibibo, and Efik. These groups mostly had democratic systems of government and several kingdoms, such as Nir Akwa Akpa (Calabar), Aro Confederacy and Opobo which were huge influences in the region.
This List shows the Most Populated Locations in South East Nigeria
Aba is the biggest city in Igboland and the main trading center in Abia state. Upon the creation of Abia state in 1991, Aba city was divided into two local government areas namely; Aba south and Aba North. Aba south is the main city center and the heart beat of Abia State.
Aba city was established as a market town. But today, it has become a major urban settlement and commercial center in a Igboland. The indigenous people of Aba city are the Ngwa subgroup of our tribe. The city is well known for its creative craftsmen. As of 2004, Aba city had an estimated population of 1,020,900.
Enugu
Enugu cityis the capital of Enugu State. The city has a population of 722,664 according to the 2006 Nigerian census. The name Enugu is derived from the two Igbo words Énú Ụ́gwụ́ meaning “hill top” denoting the city’s hilly geography. The city was named after Enugwu Ngwo, under which coal was found.
Since the 17th century the location of present-day Enugu city has been inhabited by the Nike people; one of Enugu city’s neighbourhood still retains the village’s old name “” The discovery of coal by the colonialists led to the building of the Eastern Line railway to carry coal from the inland city to the port of Port Harcourt, a city created for this purpose located 151 miles (243 km) south of what was called Enugu Coal Camp. Enugu city was then renamed simply Enugu and developed as one of the few cities in West Africa created from European contact. By 1958 Enugu city had over 8,000 coal miners, but as at 2005, there are no significant coal mining activities left in the city.
Enugu city became the capital of the Eastern Region after Nigeria’s independence in 1960; a succession of territorial adjustments in 1967, 1976 and 1991 led to Enugu city becoming the capital of what is now Enugu State. On 30 May 1967 Enugu city was declared the capital of the short-lived Republic of Biafra; for this fact, Enugu city is known as the “capital of Igbo land.” After Enugu city was captured by the Nigerian armed forces, the Biafran capital was moved to Umuahia.
Industries in the city include the urban market and bottling industries. Enugu has become a preferred filming location for directors of the Nigerian movie industry, dubbed “Nollywood”. Enugu city’s main airport is the Akanu Ibiam International Airport. The main educational establishment in the city is the Enugu campus of the University of Nigeria based in Nsukka.
Onitsha
Onitsha is a big city, a commercial, educational, and religious centre and river port in Anambra State.
In the early 1960s, before the Nigerian Civil War, the population was officially recorded as 76,000, and the town was distinctive in a number of dimensions; the great Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe characterized it as harboring an “esoteric region from which creativity sallies forth at will to manifest itself,” “a zone of occult instability” Though it experienced great suffering during and after the civil war, by virtue of its still-strategic geographic position Onitsha city has continued to develop, and by 2001 had an estimated population of 511,000 with a metropolitan population of 1,003,000.
Owerri
Owerri city is the capital of Imo state. Set in the heart of Igboland, Owerri city consists of three Local Government Areas including Owerri Municipal, Owerri North and Owerri West, it has an estimated population of about 750,000 as of 2006 and is approximately 100 square kilometres (40 sq miles) in area.
The Owerri city Slogan is Heartland. It is currently referred to as the entertainment capital of Nigeria.
Awka
Awka citywith an estimated population of 301,657 as of 2006 Nigerian census, is the capital of Anambra state. The city is located about 400 miles east of Lagos in the centre of the densely populated
The West-East Federal highway links Lagos, Benin City, Asaba, Onitsha, and Enugu to Awka city and several local roads link it to other important towns such as Ekwulobia, Agulu, Enugwu-Ukwu, Abagana, and Nnewi.
Strategically, Awka city is located midway between two major cities in Northern Igboland, Onitsha and Enugu which has informed its choice as an administrative center for the colonial authorities and today as a base for the Anambra State government.
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