Edo State

Coordinates: 6°30′N 6°00′E / 6.500°N 6.000°E / 6.500; 6.000
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Seal of Edo State
Location of Edo State in Nigeria
Location of Edo State in Nigeria
Coordinates: 6°30′N 6°00′E / 6.500°N 6.000°E / 6.500; 6.000
Date created27 August 1991
Capital and Largest cityBenin City
 • BodyGovernment of Edo State
 • Governor
Godwin Obaseki (PDP)
 • Deputy GovernorPhilip Shaibu (PDP)
 • LegislatureEdo State House of Assembly
 • SenatorsC: Monday Okpebholo (APC)
N: Adams Oshiomhole (APC)
S: Neda Imasuen (LP)
 • RepresentativesList
 • Total19,559 km2 (7,552 sq mi)
 • Rank22nd of 36
 • Total3,233,366
 • Estimate 
 • Rank15th of 36
 • Density244/km2 (630/sq mi)
 • Year2021
 • Total$25.81 billion[2]
15th of 36
 • Per capita$5,325[2]
10th of 36
Time zoneUTC+01 (WAT)
postal code
Dialing Code+234
ISO 3166 codeNG-ED
HDI (2021)0.627[3]
medium · 12th of 37

Edo, officially known as Edo State, is a state in the South-South geopolitical zone of the federal republic of Nigeria. As of 2006 national population census, the state was ranked as the 22nd most populous state (3,233,366) in Nigeria. The estimated state population is around 4,777,000 in 2022.[4][5] Edo State is the 22nd largest State by landmass in Nigeria.[6] The state's capital and largest city, Benin City, is the fourth largest city in Nigeria, and the centre of the country's rubber industry.[7][8] Created in 1991 from the former Bendel State, it is also known as the heart beat of the nation.[9] Edo State borders Kogi State to the north for 133 km and across the Niger River for 81 km to the northeast, Anambra State to the east for about four km across the Niger River, Delta State to the southeast and south for 350 km (218 miles), and Ondo State to the west.[10]

The modern borders of Edo State[11] encompasses regions that were formerly the site of various empires and kingdoms of the second dynasty formed in the 11th century AD, the Benin Empire.[12] The ancient city of Edo, the site of modern-day Benin City,[11] was home to some of the largest earthworks in the world.[13] In 1897, the British Empire conducted a punitive expedition of the region, destroying most of the ancient city of Edo and incorporating the territory into what would become the Southern Nigeria Protectorate.[14][15]

Edo State is a diverse state that is predominantly inhabited by the Edoid people, including the Edo (or Bini),[16] Esan, Ora, Akoko-Edo, Owan and Afemai people among others.[17] The most common Edoid language spoken is the Edo language, which is commonly spoken in Benin City.[18] Christianity is the dominant religion in Edo State.[11] It was first introduced to the region by Portuguese missionaries during the 15th century. Islam and traditional religions are also practised.[19]


The Mid-Western Region was a division of Nigeria from 1963 to 1991, formally known as Bendel state from 1976.[20] It was formed in June 1963 from Benin and Delta provinces of the Western Region, and its capital was Benin City.[21] It was renamed a province in 1966, and in 1967 when the other provinces were split up into several states, it remained territorially intact, becoming a state.[22]

During the Nigerian Civil War, the Biafran forces invaded the new Mid-Western state, en route to Lagos, in an attempt to force a quick end to the war. While under Biafran occupation, the state was declared as the "Republic of Benin" as Nigerian forces were to retake the region.[23] The republic collapsed a day after the declaration as Nigerian troops overtook Benin City. Edo State was established on 27 August 1991 when Bendel State was split into Edo and Delta States.[24][25] The Edo people political organization is expressed in a three-tier age group system that cuts across kin groups and make age, rather than line-age affiliation, with criterion of authority.[20] Benin city itself is organized on the basis of age-grades similar to those of the villages as well as on the basis of wards and chiefs, both hereditary and non-hereditary, serving the Oba in specialised functions. The Oba is the focal point of the Benin political system and institution is based squarely on that of divine kingship.[26]



Edo state has a Tropical wet and dry or savanna climate with yearly temperature of 28.78°C (83.8°F) and it is -0.68% lower than Nigeria's averages. Edo typically receives about 183.49 millimeters (7.22 inches) of precipitation and has 265.91 rainy days (72.85% of the time) annually and at an elevation of 239.16 meters (784.65 feet) above sea level.[27]


Burial in Edo State

With Benin City as capital, the population of the entire state is approximately 5 million.[28] It is made up of four major ethnic groups; namely Edo (Binis), Owan, Esan and Afemai (Etsako & Akoko Edo). However, the State has a high presence of residents from across the country and the world because of its cosmopolitan tendencies. Benin City has a history of being one of the foremost destinations of Europeans during their exploration of Africa continent many centuries ago. Some of these flash points have remained enviable tourists' attraction sites for the state.[29] The people are known for having several Edo traditional food.


The main ethnic groups in Edo State are Édo, Etsako, Esan, Owan, and Akoko Edo.[21] Virtually all the groups trace their origin to Benin City, hence their dialects vary with their distance from Benin City. The Edo speaking people occupy seven out of the 18 Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the state and constitute 57.54% of the total population. Others are as follows: Esan (17.14%), Etsako (12.19%), Owan (7.43%), and Akoko Edo (5.70%).[21] There are also Igbira speaking communities in Akoko Edo, Itsekiri communities in Ikpoba-Okha, and Ijaw Izons and Urhobos in Ovia North East and South West Local Government Areas, especially in the borderlands. Also, Ika speaking communities exist in Igbanke (Ika) in Orhionmwon LGA.[30]


Name Title Took office Left office Party Notes
Colonel John Ewerekumoh Yeri Governor August 1990 January 1992 (Military)
John E.K. Odigie Oyegun Governor January 1992 November 1993 SDP
Colonel Mohammed Abul-Salam Onuka Administrator 9 December 1993 14 September 1994 (Military)
Colonel Bassey Asuquo Administrator 14 September 1994 22 August 1996 (Military)
Group Captain Baba Adamu Iyam Administrator 22 August 1996 7 August 1998 (Military)
Navy Captain Anthony Onyearugbulem Administrator 7 August 1998 29 May 1999 (Military)
Chief Lucky Igbinedion Governor 29 May 1999 29 May 2007 PDP
Professor Oserheimen Osunbor Governor 29 May 2007 12 November 2008 PDP Removed by court judgment invalidating his election[31]
Comrade Adams A. Oshiomhole Governor 12 November 2008 12 November 2016 AC which later merged with some other political parties to become APC (All Progressive Congress) in 2013
Godwin Obaseki Governor 12 November 2016 present APC then decamped to the PDP on 19 June 2020 to seek re-election[32] Reelcted 20 September 2020.[33]
Ososo Hills

Local Government Areas[edit]

Edo State consists of eighteen (18) Local Government Areas. They are:

Edo State House Of Assembly (Fifth Assembly) Division List, 2013[edit]

Edo State House Of Assembly Division List 2013, consists of twenty-four (24) divisions:[34]

Edo State Judiciary[edit]

The Judiciary is the third arm of Government in the State, vested with the power to interpret the laws and resolve disputes in both civil and criminal matters in the State. The State Judiciary is headed by a Chief Judge. On 19 May 2023, Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki swore in Hon. Justice Daniel Iyobosa Okungbowa as Acting Chief Judge of Edo State, following the retirement of Justice Joe Acha.[35]


Governor Godwin Obaseki is the current governor of Edo State and was sworn into office on the 12th of November 2016.[36] His deputy is Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu.[37] The Edo State House of Assembly is the legislative body.

Electoral System[edit]

The electoral system of each state is selected using a modified two-round system. To be elected in the first round, a candidate must receive the plurality of the vote and over 25% of the vote in at least two -third of the State local government Areas. If no candidate passes threshold, a second round will be held between the top candidate and the next candidate to have received a plurality of votes in the highest number of local government Areas.[38]


English is the official language of the state. The major tribal languages spoken in the state are Edo, Etuno, Etsako, Esan, Ake-Ievbu and Okpamheri.[39] Edo State is home to several ethnicities, they are the Edo, Okpe, Esan, Afenmai, Akoko, Igbanke, Emai.[40][41][42]

The Etsako/Afemai people of Edo state have the highest population of Muslims. They live in Six local government areas within the state and their major occupation is farming.[40]

Areal view of the ancient city of Benin

Languages of Edo State listed by LGA:[43]

LGA Languages
Akoko-Edo Aduge; Akuku; Etuno; Enwan; Igwe; Ikpeshi; Ivbie North-Okpela-Arhe; Okpamheri; Okpe; Oloma; Ososo; Sasaru; Ukaan; Uneme; Yoruba
Esan Central Esan
Esan North East Esan
Esan South East Esan
Esan West Esan
Etsako Etsako; Ivbie North-Okpela-Arhe; Uneme[40]
Etsako Central Etsako
Etsako East Etsako
Etsako West Etsako
Igueben Esan
Ikpoba-Okha Edo, Itsekiri, Urhobo
Oredo Edo
Orhionmwon Edo; Ika; Isoko; Urhobo
Ovia North East Edo
Ovia South West Edo
Owan East Emai-Iuleha-Ora; Ghotuo; Idesa; Ihievbe
Owan West Emai - Iuleha, Ora
Uhunmwonde Edo; Ika

Religion Practiced In Edo State[edit]

Christianity and Islam are the major religions practiced in Edo State, although a minority of the population adhere to indigenous religions.[44][45]

The Catholic Church comprises the Archdiocese of Benin City [1] (1884 as Upper Niger) with 84 parishes under Archbishop Augustine Obiora Akubeze [2] (2011) and three suffragan dioceses of Auchi [3](2002) with 56 parishes under Bishop Gabriel Ghiakhomo Dunia [4](2002), Issele-Uku [5](1973) with 94 parishes under Bishop Michael Odogwu Elue [6](2003), and Uromi [7] (2005) with 18 parishes under Bishop Donatus Aihmiosion Ogun [8] (2014).

The Anglican Province of Bendel (2002) in the Church of Nigeria under Archbishop Cyril Odutemu (2020) includes the Diocese of Akoko-Edo (2007) led by Bishop Jolly Ehigiator Oyekpen until he died 2022, the Diocese of Benin (1962) led by Bishop Peter Imasuen (2004), the Diocese of Esan (2000) led by Bishop Gabriel Elabor (2020), the Diocese of Etsako (2007) led by Bishop Felix Unuokhe Olorunfemi, the Diocese of Oleh (1999) led by Bishop John Usiwoma Aruakpor (2012), and the Diocese of Sabongidda-Ora (1993) led by Bishop Augustine Ohilebo (2004).


Tourist attractions in Edo State include the Emotan Statue in Benin City, Ise Lake and River Niger Beach in Agenebode, Etsako-East; Mike Akhigbe Square at fugar, Ambrose Alli Square, Ekpoma, River Niger Beaches at Ilushi, BFFM Building at Ewu, Obiemen lake in Agua Irrua , Igun Bronze Caster at Igun Street in Benin City, College of Agriculture and Aqua Culture Technology, Agenebode, Okpekpe with its hills and scenes and the Usomege Hills at Apana-Uzairue, Somorika hills in Akoko Edo, where a government-run tourist center at Ososo is set among spectacular scenery.[46][47]

The state produces crude oil,[48] and other mineral resources like limestone and quarry. The state has a cement factory at Okpella[49] and a Flour Mill at Ewu which is moribund.[49]

Human trafficking[edit]

The rate of Human Trafficking in Edo State is in this region of Nigeria.[50] Located in Nigeria's Southern region, Edo State accounts for the highest proportion of irregular migrants in Nigeria.[51] Young girls in Edo state are enticed with false promises to leave Nigeria and travel abroad for a better life, by the traffickers.[52] The traffickers in this state also use manipulation, diabolical oath and debt bondage to control their victims and force them into slavery, forced labour, sex trafficking, and organ sales.[53]

Mineral Resources In Edo State[edit]

The following are the Mineral Resources found in Edo State[54]


Notable tertiary learning institutions in Edo state include:


List of Edo State Medical zones and associated local government areas.[34]

Medical Zone Local Government Name Of Hospital Medical Zone Local Government Name Of Hospital Medical Zone Local Government Name Of Hospital
Abudu Orhionmwon General Hospital, Abudu[69] Benin Oredo Central Hospital B/City[70] Igarra Akoko Edo General Hospital, Igarra
Abudu Orhionmwon General Hospital, Igbanke[71] Benin Oredo Cottage. Hospital Obayantor[72][73] Igarra Akoko Edo Government Hospital, Ibillo
Abudu Orhionmwon General Hospital, Uronigbe[74] Benin Oredo Stella Obasanjo Hospital[75][76][73] Etete Layout Road, Benin City Dist. Hospital, Uneme-Osu
Abudu Orhionmwon Cot. Hospital Oben Ekpoma Esan West General Hospital, Ekpoma[77] Iguobazuwa Ovia South West General Hospital. Iguobazuwa
Abudu Orhionmwon Cot. Hospital Egbokor Ekpoma Esan West General Hospital, Iruekpen Iguobazuwa Ovia South West Government Hospital Usen
Abudu Uhunmwode Dist. Hospital, Egba Ekpoma Esan Central Dist. Hospital, Usugbenu Iguobazuwa Ovia North East Dist. Hospital, Ekiadolor
Afuze Owan East General Hospital, Afuze[78] Ekpoma Esan Central Dist. Hospital, Ewu Ossiomo Leprosy Clinic in All L.G.A Specislist Hospital, Ossiomo
Afuze Owan East Dist. Hospital, Otuo Fugar Etsako East General Hospital, Fugar Ubiaja Esan South West General Hospital, Ubiaja
Afuze Owan West General Hospital, Sabogida Ora[79] Fugar Etsako East General Hospital, Agenebode Ubiaja Esan South West Dist. Hospital, Ewohimi
Afuze Owan West Dist. Hospital, Uzebba Fugar Etsako East Dist. Hospital, Apana Ubiaja Igueben Government Hospital, Igueben
Auchi Estako West Central. Hospital, Auchi[80] Fugar Etsako West Government Hospital, Agbede Uromi Esan North East Central Hospital Uromi


Federal Highways are

  • A2 north from Warri to Delta State via Benin City to Okene in Kogi State,
  • A121 (part of TAH8: Trans-African Highway 8 Lagos-Mombasa) west from A2 in Benin City via Okokpon and Ugbogui to Ondo State at Ofosu,
  • A122 north from Benin City via Odighi to Ondo State at Sobe,
  • A232 (part of TAH8) east from Benin City via Iguomo, Ugoneki, Ugomoson, Abudu and Ossiomo and Ogan to Agbor (Delta State).

Other major roads include

  • the Siuko Rd northwest from Benin City via Ogheghe and Okoro to Okokpon,
  • the Ekiadoro-Olumoye-Uhen Rd north from A121 at Ekiadoro to Ondo State at Ogbesse,
  • the Auchi-Ekpessa Rd to Federal Rd Uwhosi to Kogi State at Lankpeshi,
  • the Auchi-Agenebode Rd east from A2 at Auchi via Ivioghe as the Ayoguri-Agenebode Rd,
  • north from Fugar to Kogi State,
  • the Uromi Igbanke Rd south to A232 at Agbor to Delta State,
  • the Sakpoba Rd northeast from Ugbeka to Agbor in Delta State,
  • the Warri-Sakpoba Rd southwest from Otefe to A2 at Ogharefe Junction in Delta State.

Airports: Benin City is served by Benin Airport with flights to Abuja, Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt.

Notable people[edit]


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Works cited[edit]

  • Strayer, Robert W. (2013). Ways of the World: A Brief Global History with Sources (2nd ed.). New York: Bedford/St.Martin's. ISBN 978-0312583460.

External links[edit]