Which is the First Capital of Nigeria?

The question on the first capital of Nigeria is a bit controversial due to lack of official statements that provide the answer. While it’s widely believed that Calabar is the official capital of Nigeria, some authorities strongly hold that Asaba, and not Calabar, is the first capital of the area now known as Nigeria. Others, however, claim that Lokoja is the first capital of Nigeria. Here, we’ll look at the argument from each side.

According to Wikipedia, the city of Calabar once served as the capital of the Niger Coast Protectorate, Southern Protectorate, and Oil River protectorate, thus making it the first effective capital of Nigeria until the late nineteenth century.

However, according to some authorities, the colonial masters started the administration of Nigeria from Asaba, the present-day capital of Delta state. It was further claimed that Asaba was the preferred choice of the British Royal Niger Company which held various treaties with the local prior to its incorporation.

According to some others, Lokoja was the first capital of the country because it served as the first settlement of the British in Nigeria. In fact, the name “Nigeria” was coined by Lady Flora Shaw while she was in Lokoja. It was claimed that after the amalgamation of the Northern and Southern protectorates of Nigeria, Lord Frederick Lugard, the first Governor-general of Nigeria, ruled the country from Lokoja.

So, giving an answer to the question on the first capital of Nigeria qould be difficult, since each claim is backed by some sort of evidence that cannot be refuted.

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Question: Which is the first capital of Nigeria?

Answer: Controversial (Calabar, Asaba, or Lokoja)