Population: 154,729,000 inhabitants (2009)
Density: 167.5 inhabitants per sq. km
The five largest cities are:
- Lagos 8029200
- Kano 3248700
- Ibadan 3078400
- Kaduna 1458900
- Port Harcourt 1053900
Health care provision in Nigeria is a concurrent responsibility of the three tiers of government in the country. However, because Nigeria operates a mixed economy, private providers of health care have a visible role to play in health care delivery. The federal government's role is mostly limited to coordinating the affairs of the university teaching hospitals, while the state government manages the various general hospitals and the local government focus on dispensaries, (which are regulated by the federal government through NAFDAC).
Nigeria had no social security system. Less than 1 percent of the population older than sixty years received pensions. Because of the younger age of urban migrants, there were fewer older people per family unit in urban areas. Official statistics were questionable, however, because at least one survey indicated a number of elderly living alone in northern cities or homeless persons living on the streets and begging. There was some evidence that the traditional practice of caring for parents was beginning to erode under harsh conditions of scarcity in urban areas.
The Nigerian government provides free education but attendance is not obligatory at any level. According to the Nigerian National Planning Commission 2004 report, the country’s educational system is “dysfunctional” characterized by crumbling institutions and ill-prepared graduates. Education in Nigeria consists of the primary school (6 years), junior secondary school (3 years), senior secondary school (3 years), and university education (4 years or more).
Nigerian law requires compulsory education for all students between the ages of 6 and 15. Students in primary and secondary school attend three equally divided sessions from January through December, with about a month vacation between sessions.
Several religions in Nigeria coexist, helping to accentuate regional and ethnic distinctions. All religions represented in Nigeria were practiced in every major city in 1990. However, Islam dominated the north and held strong numbers in the South Western, Yoruba part of the country. Protestantism and local syncretic Christianity are also evidence in Yoruba areas, while Catholicism dominates the Igbo and closely related areas. Both Protestantism and Catholicism dominated in the Ibibio, Annang, and the Efik kiosa lands.
There has been growth in the Christ Apostolic Church (the first Aladura Movement in Nigeria) and the Aladura Church, an indigenous Christian sect that was especially strong in the Yoruba areas and of evangelical churches in general, spilling over into adjacent and southern areas of the middle belt.