|Nickname(s): God's Own State
|Date created||27 August 1991|
|• Governor||Theodore Orji (PDP)|
|• Senators||Eyinnaya Abaribe, Uche Chukwumerije, Nkechi Justina Nwaogu|
|• Total||6,320 km2 (2,440 sq mi)|
|Population (2006 census)|
|• Density||450/km2 (1,200/sq mi)|
|• Total||$18.69 billion|
|• Per capita||$3,003|
|Time zone||WAT (UTC+01)|
|ISO 3166 code||NG-AB|
Abia State is a state in the south eastern part of Nigeria. The capital is Umuahia and the major commercial city is Aba, formerly a British colonial government outpost. The state was created in 1991 from part of Imo State and its citizens are predominantly Igbo people (95% of population). It is one of the nine constituent states of the Niger Delta region.
History and population
Abia State was carved out of the former Imo State in 1991. The name "Abia" is an abbreviation of four of the state's densely populated regions Aba, Bende, Isuikwuato, and Afikpo. It is one of the thirty-six (36) States that constitute the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Abia people are of the Igbo ethnic group who predominates much of the Southeastern part of Nigeria. Their traditional language is Igbo. English is widely spoken and serves as the official language in governance and business. Abia's 2.4mm people are mainly Christians.
The State Government is led by a democratically-elected executive Governor who works closely with an elected State House Assembly. The capital city is Umuahia. There are Seventeen (17) local government areas (LGAs).
In 1999 Nigeria became a democracy, and Orji Uzor Kalu contested on the platform of the People's Democratic Party (PDP) and won the Governorship election in Abia State. Consequently he was sworn-in on 29 May 1999. In 2003, when it was time for fresh elections, Kalu re-contested on the platform of the PDP and got a second mandate to govern. (The Constitution of Nigeria limits Governors to two terms in office.) Theodore Orji (PPA) defeated Onyema Ugochukwu (PDP) in the 2007 general elections to become Abia's next Governor.In 2011, Theodore Orji decamped from PPA to the PDP and was re-elected for another four-year tenure.
Local Government Areas
Abia State has 17 local government areas (LGAs). They are:
|Enyi (Eze) of Aba||Igbo / ?||Eze Issac Ikonne|
|Osimiri III of Aba||Igbo / Aba||Eze (Barrister) Sunday Emejiaka||1||Aba South||Aba|
|Eze Aro||Igbo / Arochukwu||Mazi Ogbonnaya Vincent Okoro (Eze Aro III)||1||Arochukwu||Oro Arochukwu|
|Ike 1 of Ikeisu||Igbo / Isu||Dr. Augustine O. Igwe (Ike I)||?||Arochukwu||Ikeisu (Utugiyi)|
|Ugo Oha (Eze) of Etiti Mgboko Umuanunu||Igbo / Etiti||Ngozi Ibekwe||1||Obi ngwa|
|Eze Ukwu 1 of Ngwa-Ukwu||Igbo / Ngwa||Benard Enweremadu||1||Isiala Ngwa||Ngwa Ukwu|
|Eze of Nunya||Igbo / ?||Dr. M.E. Ihevume||?||?|
|Ossah-Ibeku (Eze) of Umuahia||Igbo / ?||Hope Onuigbo||X||X||Umuahia Amibo, Nsukwe|
|Eze of Uturu||Igbo / Uturu||A.E. Ude||?||Isuikwuato||Uturu|
|Igbojiakuru (Eze) of Alayi||Igbo / Alayi||Ukeje Philip||?||Bende||Ndi Elendu, Amaeke Alayi|
|Awu (Eze)of Isuamawu||Igbo / Isuikwuato||Surveyor Chris E Aboh,FNIS||?||Isuikwuato||Eluama Isuama|
|Enachioken Of Abiriba||Igbo / Abiriba||Kalu Kalu Ogbu||?||Ohafia LGA||Abiriba|
|Ohanyere I Of Ohiya||Igbo / Umuahia||Eze Abel E. Uhuegbue||?||Umuahia South LGA||Abia|
|Ome Udo I Of Umueze, Ohiya||Igbo / Ohiya||Nnanna S. Nwamarah||?||Umuahia South LGA||Abia|
|Ome Udo II Of Umueze, Ohiya||Igbo / Ohiya||Uche Nwamarah||?||Umuahia South LGA||Abia|
|Okaa Omee I of Amaikwu, Abia||Igbo / Ohiya||Uche Nwamarah||?||Umuahia South LGA||Abia|
Abia State, which occupies about 5,834 square kilometers, is bounded on the north and northeast by the states of Anambra, Enugu, and Ebonyi. To the west of Abia is Imo State, to the east and southeast are Cross River State and Akwa Ibom State, and to the south is Rivers State. The southern part of the State lies within the riverine part of Nigeria. It is low-lying tropical rain forest with some oil-palm brush. the southern oportion gets heavy rainfall of about 2,400 millimetres (94 in) per year especially intense between the months of April through October. The rest of the State is moderately high plain and wooded savanna. The most important rivers in Abia State are the Imo and Aba Rivers which flow into the Atlantic Ocean through the Niger Delta.
Infrastructure and economy
Crude oil and gas production is a prominent activity, as it contributes to 39% of the GDP. The manufacturing sector only accounts for 2% of the GDP. The industrial center of the state is in Aba, with textile manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, soap, plastics, cement, footware, and cosmetics. Representing 27% of the GDP, agriculture, which employs 70%  of the state workforce, is the second economic sector of Abia. With its adequate seasonal rainfall, Abia has much arable land that produces yams, maize, potatoes, rice, cashews, plantains, taro, and cassava. Oil palm is the most important cash crop.
University and Colleges
There are three universities in the state: the federally owned Michael Okpara University of Agriculture at Umudike and the state-owned Abia State University in Uturu and the Gregory University Uturu (Privately owned). There are two tertiary hospitals, the Federal Medical Center in Umuahia and the Abia State University Teaching Hospital in Aba, which serve as referral hospitals in the State. The Abia State Polytechnic is also in the city of Aba. There are two major power plants in Abia, The Alaoji Power plant and the Geometric Power plant. Abia is one of the most peaceful states in Nigeria and has been a "haven" for foreign investors. The state's population has grown rapidly since its creation.
The nearest airport to Abia state is Sam Mbakwe Cargo Airport (Owerri Airport), an hour’s drive to Aba; and Port Harcourt International Airport, 2 hours to Aba and about three hours to Umuahia. Uyo Airport Akwa Ibom State can also serve would be visitors. The Distance between Uyo (Akwa Ibom) and Umuahia (Abia) is: 73.28 kilometres (45.53 mi).
The rail transport is also another means of travel, very effective but currently on revitalization. Aba is connected to Port Harcourt by rail. The Coastal parts of the State are equally accessible with boats and canoes.
- See List of Governors of Abia State for a list of prior governors
- Federal Republic of Nigeria Official Gazette (15 May 2007). "Legal Notice on Publication of the Details of the Breakdown of the National and State Provisional Totals 2006 Census" (PDF). Retrieved 2007-05-19.
- "C-GIDD (Canback Global Income Distribution Database)". Canback Dangel. Archived from the original on 7 September 2008. Retrieved 2008-08-20.
- Hoiberg, Dale H., ed. (2010). "Abia". Encyclopedia Britannica. I: A-ak Bayes (15th ed.). Chicago, IL: Encyclopedia Britannica Inc. p. 32. ISBN 978-1-59339-837-8.
- "Enugu State". Igbofocus.co.uk. 2012-01-17. Retrieved 2012-10-28.
- "Abia State history". Abia-union.org. Retrieved 2012-10-28.
- Chairman of the Abia State Council of Traditional Rulers
- Nigeria's 36 States and the FCT, Economic, societal and political profiles, World Bank Report
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