Kaduna State

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Kaduna State
Nickname(s): Centre of Learning
Location of Kaduna State in Nigeria
Location of Kaduna State in Nigeria
Coordinates: 10°20′N 7°45′E / 10.333°N 7.750°E / 10.333; 7.750Coordinates: 10°20′N 7°45′E / 10.333°N 7.750°E / 10.333; 7.750
Country  Nigeria
Date created 27 May 1967
Capital Kaduna
 • Governor
Mallam Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai (APC)
 • Total 46,053 km2 (17,781 sq mi)
Area rank 3rd of 36
Population (2006 census)1
 • Total 6,066,562
 • Rank 3rd of 36
 • Density 130/km2 (340/sq mi)
 • Year 2007
 • Total $10.33 billion[1]
 • Per capita $1,666[1]
Time zone WAT (UTC+01)
ISO 3166 code NG-KD
^1 Preliminary results

Kaduna State is a state in the North West zone of Nigeria. Its capital is Kaduna.



The word 'Kaduna' is said to be a corruption of a Gbagyi word/name for a river. Another version of the etymology of the name is a narrative linked to the Hausa word for crocodile - but this is contested by the Gbagyi ethnic group known to have lived in the area for centuries. It is therefore indicative that the name, Kaduna, was taken-up by Lord Frederick Lugard and his colonial colleagues when they moved the capital of the then Northern Region from Zungeru to Kaduna in 1916. This move of the colonial office to Kaduna started 1912-1918/20 with the initial effort having been made in 1902 from Jebba to Zungeru.

At the start of British colonial rule in northern Nigeria the people groups who live in the area became 'Northern Nigerians'- a construct which continues even till date. By 1967 these people groups again were carved into 'North Central State' and this was the case until 1975 that 'Kaduna State' was formerly created by the then military leader, Gen. Murtala Mohammed, with all distinct identities amalgamated into one state without a referendum. The state hence is the successor of the old Northern Region of Nigeria, which had its capital at Kaduna which is now the state capital to about 6.3 million people (Nigerian census figure, 2006).

It was from the old Northern Region that in the year 1967 gave birth to six states in the north, leaving Kaduna as the capital of North-Central State, whose name was changed to Kaduna State in 1976. Meanwhile, Kaduna was further divided in 1987, creating Katsina State. Under the governance of Kaduna is the ancient city of Zaria, Kafanchan and Nok, the area one of Africa's earliest civilization is recorded to have been excavated. The most intriguing aspect of this area is that the colonial construction and its post-colonial successor call 'Nigeria' hardly documented the history or the method of how Kaduna state's people groups encompassed in these constructs define and identify themselves as such the people groups who populate the area have lived in near oblivion or obscurity as they often are thought of as Hausa people.

Local Government Areas[edit]

Kaduna State consists of twenty-three (23) Local Government Areas. They are:


Kaduna State, north central Nigeria, is politically classified as belonging to the now 'North - West' zone of the current six (6) Geo - political zones of Nigeria. It is populated by about 59 to 63 different ethnic groups if not more with the exactitude of the number requiring further verification through a genuine field work [Hayab, 2014].

The question therefore is what ethnic groups make up who are 'Kaduna State indigenes' today? It is note worthy that what is Kaduna state currently is a construct as the people groups who make up the population of the state lived, cultivated their own lands and had separate political and social systems with little or no interference by neighbouring groups before the 1800s.

More so, the entities, ethnic or social groups have names they call themselves in their languages, and in these forms they pre-existed colonial invasion and construction of what the books tell us today. However, most, if not all, have been labelled by the Hausa who were the ready group explored for colonial indirect rule in the area. Most of these names labelled by the Hausa are derogatory in nature and at best a corruption of the original/indigenous identity of the people with the latter either disappearing or in total obscurity to the immediate environment and to the outside world.

Thus a list of over 57 ethnic groups in Kaduna state challenges and counters locally preconceived and global assumption that everyone from current Kaduna state or even the north of Nigeria at large is Hausa. This conclusion is not only untrue and misleading but explains how the history of the people groups in this area has been disrupted and skewed by the invasion of the Hausa from 1800s who were later aided by the European powers from the 1900s. This is understandably so because the Jihad led by Othman Dan Fodio of 1800s had created an organised Islamic structure of hierarchical governance which the British explored to establish indirect rule. Thus with the aid of British colonialists, the Hausa emirates in the north, and in this case the current geographical spread of Kaduna state with Headquarters in Zazzau (Zaria), continued to wield administrative and political power over a vast area of land and peoples until lately when this is being challenged. It is the questioning of this 'influence' which often results in ethno/religious clashes in the north especially from the 1980s. While the whole idea of a state in the nature it is today is a construct, it is indisputably true that these people groups with their distinct and some times shared identities are found within the geographic spread of current Kaduna state.

These groups include: 1. Adara (dubbed Kadara), 2. Akurmi (labelled Kurama by the Hausa), 3. Anghan (dubbed Kamanton by the Hausa), 4. Amo, 5. Aruruma (named Ruruma by the Hausa), 6. Atachaat (dubbed Kachechere), 7. Atyab (dubbed Kataf by the Hausa), 8. Atuku, 9. Ayu, 10. Bajju, 11. Bakulu (Ikulu by the Hausa), 12. Bhazar (named Koro), 13. Bur (Sanga), 14. Binawa, 15. Dingi, 16. Fantswam, 17. Fulfulde (Arrived around 1800s), 18. Gbagyi, 19. Gure, 20. Gwandara, 21. Gwong (Kagoma in Hausa), 22. Ham (dubbed Jaba in Hausa which is a derogatory name), 23. Hausa, 24. Jangi, 25. Kaibi, 26. Kahugu, 27. Kanufi, 28. Kigono, 29. Kinugu, 30. Kitimi, 31. Kiwafa, 32. Kiwollo, 33. Kono, 34. Kuvori (call Surubu), 35. Kuturmi, 36. Lemoro * not sure, 37. Mada (Mardan) Mada must have migrated during colonial rule, 38. Nandu, 39. Nduyah, 40. Numana, 41. Nindem, 42. Ningeshe, 43. Ninkyop, 44. Ninzo, 45. Nyenkpa (Yeskwa), 46. Oegworok, 47. Pikal, 48. Pitti, 49. Ribang, 50. Rishuwa, 51. Rumada, 52. Rumayya, 53. Shemawa* Hausa name?, 54. Sholio (Dubbed Marwa), 55. Siyawa (Bauchi state?), 56. Takad, 57. Tarri, and 58. Tsam (Chawai) (Hayab,J.P. 2014 on going research).

A thorough study of the ethnic groups which make up Kaduna State had taken long to come up to the knowledge of the world despite that several European scholars wrote about them. This is owing to the contestation of dominance between the northern part of the state which is predominantly Hausa with the bulk of the other languages spoken on the side formerly known as southern Zaria. The term 'southern Zaria' was used to refer to all non - Hausa peoples in the area of what is Kaduna state today until lately when a Southern Kaduna Senatorial District was created. It should be noted that the people groups in the state other than the Hausa were the groups that were considered as 'PAGANS' thus were Christianized by the European missionaries.

Available records show that Christian mission activities in the area began formally from the 1900s with the establishment of Sudan Interior Mission (S.I.M.) in the Ham town of Har Kwain (Kwoi) hence today these people groups are predominantly Christians. Culturally, the people groups of the then southern Zaria who now see themselves as southern Kaduna, with some exception it must be acknowledged, share a lot in the cultural practices of marriage rites, naming, burial, farming, social organisations, kinship, etc. Until a full scale research is undertaken, the diversity of Kaduna state remains blurred as some ethnic groups are so small in population so much so that they are often overshadowed by the larger groups who live near them.

 from Jebba to [2]


Kaduna is one of the education centers in Nigeria, with many colleges and the most recognized university in Nigeria

Nigeria college of aviation technology, Zaria

  • Nigerian Institute of transport technology, Zaria


Hayab (2014) is part of an on going doctoral research on sociolinguistics at Stellenbosch University, South Africa. The contributor teaches English language and Literature at Kaduna State College of Education, Gidan Waya, an institution located in the south of Kaduna state where the bulk of the people groups are found.


External links[edit]