Here are some basic facts you may need to know about Benue State. Basal Historical and present-day verities of the State are briefly incorporated herein.
Benue State which is nicknamed Food Basket of the Nation was created on the 3rd day of February 1976. The state was among the new states created by the late General Murtala Muhammed led Military Administration which added to the number of states in the federation from twelve to nineteen states.
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The name of the state was derived from River Benue; the second largest river in Nigeria. The river signifies and peculiar geographical marker in the state.
Benue State has its capital seat in Makurdi which was established in the early twenties. Makurdi gained loftiness when it became the headquarters of Benue State Province in the year 1927. In 1976, Markurdi was made the capital of Benue State and serves as the same to date.
The state lies between Latitudes 6.5° and 8.5° North and Longitudes 7.47° N and 10 East. It has a landmass of 33,955 square kilometers.
The State is located in the middle of the country and it shares a boundary with six other states which include: Nassarawa State to the North, we have Kogi and Enugu States to the West, Ebonyi and Cross River states to the South and Taraba to the East. The State also shares an international boundary Cameroun on the South-east.
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Benue State has several ethnic groups: Tiv, Idoma, Igede, Etulo, Jukun, Abakpa, Akweya, Hausa, and Nyifon. The Tiv being the dominant ethnic group and occupies 14 local government areas of the state, and then seconded by Idoma and Igede which occupy the remaining nine local government areas of the state. The remaining ethnic groups are minors.
Mostly, the people of the State are farmers but those that live close to the riverine regions are into fishing as their second source of livelihood. The people are also known for their rich cultural heritage.
Benue State has natural and mineral resources in abundance. The state is called the food basket of the nation because of its food surplus and sufficiency.
The State is very rich in agricultural products like rice, beans, yam, cassava, maize, potatoes, soya beans, millets, cocoyam, sorghum, etc. The State supplies over 70% of soya bean consumed in Nigeria
According to the 2006 census, the state has a total of 4,253,641 population and ranks 7th out of 36 in the country.
Governor Samuel Ortom is the present Governor of the State and the Deputy Governor is Benson Abounu both from the All Progressive Congress (APC).
There are three Universities in Benue State namely:
- Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi
- Benue State University, Makurdi
- University of Mkar, Mkar, Gboko
There are two Polytechnics in The State namely:
- Benue State Polytechnic, Ugbokolo
- Fidei Polytechnic, Gboko
There are about four Colleges of Education in Benue State namely:
- Akperan Orshi College of Agriculture, Yandev
- Federal College of Education Agasha,
- College of Education Oju,
- College of Education Kastina Ala
Local Government Areas in Benue State
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The State has a total of twenty-three (23) Local Government Areas namely:
- Gwer East
- Gwer West
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