Plateau State, Nigeria
|Area:||30,913 sq kilometres|
|Population:||3,178,712 (2006 est.)|
|Language(s):||Hausa, Birom, Ngas, Taroh, Anaguta, Afezere, Ron-Kulere, Mwagavul, Gumai, Bassa|
|Governor:||Simon Lalong (APC)
|Date Created:||3 February 1976|
|Population Rank:||Ranked 26th|
Plateau State is one of the 36 states of Nigeria. It is the twelfth largest state in Nigeria, and gets its name from the Jos Plateau. It is in the central region of Nigeria and its capital is Jos.
The State is situated almost in the middle of the country. To its North are Kaduna and Bauchi states while Benue state is at its Southern border. It is flanked in the east by Taraba State and in the west by Nassarawa state.
Plateau State is located in Nigeria’s middle belt. With an area of 26,899 square kilometres, the State has an estimated population of about three million people. It is located between latitude 08°24'N and longitude 008°32' and 010°38' east. The state is named after the picturesque Jos Plateau, a mountainous area in the north of the state with captivating rock formations.
Plateau state was created in February 1976 when it was carved out of Benue-Plateau State.
The original name of the state capital, Jos, was actually "Gwosh" but it was wrongly pronounced as 'Jos' by the Hausa who settled on the site and turned it into a trading centre.
The British began to exert colonial control of Nigeria in the early 20th century. At that time, much of Plateau State was part of Bauchi Province. In 1926, Plateau Province, made up of Jos and Pankshin Divisions, was carved out of Bauchi. The border changed several times in subsequent years as the government sought not to split ethnic groups. In May 1967, Benue and Plateau Provinces were merged to form the large Benue-Plateau State. At this time Nigeria had twelve states.
Plateau State is said to be a miniature Nigeria primarily because nearly all the ethnic groups of Nigeria are present there.
There are more than 50 ethnic groups in Plateau state. These include: Berom, Ngas, Tarok, Alago, Goemai, Mada, Nwaghavul, Ron, Gbagyi, Eggan, Youn, Montol, Gwandara, Mapun, Chip, Rindre, Bagghom, Egbura, Hausa, Fulani, Kambari, Bassa, Afo, Fler, Ninzam, Koro, Gade, Amo etc. Its unique geographical features and numerous ethnic groups make it a mosaic of socio-cultural activities in Nigeria.
The state has 17 Local Government: Barikin Ladi, Bassa, Bokkos, Jos East, Jos North, Jos South, Kanam, Kanke, Langtang North, Langtang South, Mangu, Mikang, Pankshin, Qua'an Pan, Riyom, Shendam, Wase.
University of Jos, Police Staff College, Bukuru, St. Augustine Major Seminary, Jos and the Theological College of Northern Nigeria. The State boasts of many institutions of research and learning such as the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru, the National Veterinary Research Institute, Vom and NDLEA Command College.
Agricultural products are available in large scale and these include potatoes, groundnut, vegetables of varied sorts,fruits, yams and many other items.
Natural resources as cassiterite, barytes, clay, kaolin columbite, tin, gemstone, galena quartz and feldspar.
Plateau State is known as The Home of Peace and Tourism and there is plenty to see.
Assop Falls, Rivom LGA Physical * Shere Hills, Near Jos Physical * Riyom Rock Formation, Rivom Physical * International Youth Tourism Centre, Kurra Falls Physical/Man-made * Rayfield Resort, Jos Man-made Resort * Heleena Farms, Liberty Dam Physical/Man-made * Jos Wildlife Park Wildlife Eco-Tourism * Jos Zoo/Museum Zoo/Monument * Naraguta Leather Works, Arts & Crafts/ Naraguta Souvenirs * Solomon Lar Amusement Park Man-made
The Wildlife Safari Park sits in the middle of 8 km2 (3.09 sq. miles) of unspoiled savanna bush, about 4 km (2 mi) from Jos. It offers a wide variety of wild animals within easy viewing. These include buffalos, lions, leopards, baboons, monkeys, derby elands, pythons, crocodiles, chimpanzees, jackals and the rare pygmy hippopotamus, which is being successfully bred in the 'hippo pool’. The park also boasts great, panoramic views of Jos city.
The National Museum in Jos was founded in 1952, and is recognised as one of the best in the country. It is renowned for its archeology and The Pottery Hall has an exceptional collection of finely crafted pottery from all over Nigeria. The museum boasts some fine specimens of Nok terracotta heads and artifacts dating from between 500 BC to 200 AD.
The Museum of Traditional Nigerian Architecture is adjacent, with life-size replicas of a variety of buildings, from the walls of Kano and the Mosque at Zaria to a Tiv village. In addition, articles of interest from colonial times relating to the railway and tin mining can be found on display.
Jos Zoo is located in Jos city, beside the museum. It has a good stock of animals, birds and reptiles and was established in 1957.
Assop Falls is perhaps, the most notable of Nigeria's many waterfalls. Located at the edge of the Jos Plateau, about 40 miles (64 km) from Jos city, on the road to Abuja, this is a popular tourist stop for picnicking, swimming and enjoying the scenery. Assop Falls has also proved popular with people shooting local soap operas and advertisements.
Kurra Falls is an area some 77 kilometers southeast of Jos. It is the location of the state's first hydroelectric power station. It is a beautiful area of rocks hills, and lakes, ideal for boating, camping, and rock climbing. There is tourist accommodation available.
Wase Rock is a striking dome-shaped inselberg which juts out of the ground to an height of 450 meters. It is located about 216 kilometers southeast of Jos near Wase town. It is one of the only five breeding places for the white pelican in Africa. Because of this, the government now protects about 321 acres (1.30 km2) of land around the rock as a bird sanctuary and for wildlife development.
The Kerang highlands are located about 88 kilometres from Jos. These volcanic hills are the source of natural mountain springs, which supply the popular spring water company (SWAN).
The Shere Hills include some of the Plateau’s highest peaks. They are a scenic range of hills to the east of Jos which offer a view of the city below. They offer opportunities to mountain climbers and hill walkers alike.
Riyom Rock is a rock formation, located 25 kilometers southwest of Jos, near Riyom town.
Pandam Game Reserve is a wildlife sanctuary. It is a protected region of natural habitat and is home to hippopotami, crocodiles, and snakes of all types. Local park rangers track local game on foot and guide people to the best viewing areas. This area is still virtually unspoiled by human contact. It offers sports fishing facilities and tourist accommodation is available.
Kahwang Rock Formation is a set of basalt rocks, located in Bangai village of Bachi District in Riyom Local Government of the state, the Kahwang rocks have received tourists from different parts of the state, the country at large and on occasions, from outside Nigeria, who visit the site to see for themselves the wonders of nature. This site is however, still awaiting the attention of the Plateau State Tourism Corporation to meet modern standards and to serve as another source of revenue generation to the state.
Miango Rest House is a retreat and conference center located in Miango established by missionaries (SIM Nigeria) in 1914. It is located next to Kent Academy, a non-denominational missionary school. The Rest House provides visitors with plenty of opportunities to hike in the surrounding area. The property also features a man-made dam, a farm and is located at the foot of small hill (Mt. Sanderson) that provides a beautiful view of the area.
Schools on The Web:
State Liason Office:
2, John J. Kadiya Close, Off Jose Marti Crescent, Asokoro, Abuja