Kwara State is one of the 36 States in Nigeria, located in the western part of the country. The state is situated within the North Central geopolitical zone of Nigeria, with the slogan “State of Harmony”.
Kwara State was created on the 27th of May 1967 and its capital is Ilorin. According to the 2006 census conducted in the country, Kwara State has about 2,365,353 people living in the State. Of course, it is obvious the population would have witnessed some growth in recent years.
The Yoruba ethnic group is the predominant one in the State, and the current governor of Kwara is Abdulfatah Ahmed of the People’s Democratic Party alongside his deputy Peter Sara Kisira.
The State was founded during the regime of Yakubu Gowon when he split the four regions that then made up the Federation of Nigeria into 12 states.
At its creation, Kwara constitutes of the former Ilorin and Kabba provinces of the then Northern Region. Although it wasn’t called Kwara initially, but was known as the West Central State.
Afterwards, the name “Kwara” was picked – which is a local name for the River Niger.
A lot of States have been carved out of Kwara. In 1976 for instance, the Idah/Dekina region of Kwara was carved out and joined with a part of the then Benue/Plateau State to form Benue State.
Even in 1991, some local government areas (including Oyi, Yagba, Okene, Okehi and Kogi) were also removed to form part of the new Kogi State.
The State is blessed with various mineral resources such as tamaline and tantalite. There are also a lot of Cocoa and Kolanut in the Southern parts of the State.
Local Government Areas
There are 16 Local Government Areas in the State, and they are:
- Ilorin East
- Ilorin South
- Ilorin West
- Oke Ero
There are various exciting spots to see in Kwara State. Some of them are:
- Esie Museum
- Owu waterfalls
- Imoleboja Rock Shelter
- Kainji Lake National Parks
- Agbonna Hill Awon Mass Wedding in Shao.
A lot of residents of the State are farmers. Agriculture is the major source of the State’s economy. The farmers cultivate cash crops like cotton, cocoa, coffee, Kolanut and tobacco.
Kwara State also have some mineral resources like Gold, limestone, marble, feldspar, clay, and kaolin.
Higher Institutions in Kwara
Kwara State has various educational institutions such as:
- University of Ilorin (a federal university)
- Kwara State University (a state university)
- Kwara State Polytechnic
- Federal Polytechnic Offa
- The college of education, Ilorin,
- School of Health technology, Offa
- College of Nursing, Ilorin.
List of private institution in Kwara State
- Landmark University, Omu-Aran,
- Crown Hill University, Eiye N’korin
- Al-Hikmah University, Ilorin
- Summit University, Offa.
Notable People From Kwara State
There are some popular Nigerians who hails from Kwara State. Some of them are:
- Abubakar Olusola Saraki. A politician
- Abdulfatah Ahmed. A banker and politician
- Adamu Atta. A politician
- Sarah Alade. A former CBN governor
- Adebayo Salami. An actor
- Ahmed Mohammed Inuwa, politician
- Bukola Saraki. A politician, current Senate President (His main challenger in 2019 elections is Dr. Ibrahim Yahaya of All Progressive Congress in the February 23 Nationa Assembly Election)
- Bola Shagaya. An Oil Magnate
- Cornelius Adebayo. A politician
- David Bamigboye. A soldier
- David Oyedepo. Founder of Winners Chapel
- Gbemisola Ruqayyah Saraki. A politician
- Joseph Ayo Babalola. A renowned Cleric
- Kemi Adesoye. A screenwriter
- Kunle Afolayan. An actor and film director
- Lágbájá. A musician
- Lai Mohammed. A lawyer and politician
- Rashidi Yekini. A Nigerian football hero
- Theophilus Bamigboye. A soldier and politician
- Tunde Adebimpe. A musician
- Tunde Idiagbon. A soldier
Past governors of Kwara State from 1967 till date (both military and civilian) are:
- David Bamigboye: Ruled from 28 May 1967 to July 1975 as a military administrator
- Ibrahim Taiwo: He was the military administartor from Jul 1975 to 13 Feb 1976
- George Agbazika Innih: He ruled from 13 Feb 1976 to July 1978, he was a military administrator
- Sunday Ifere: From July 1978 to October 1979 as a military adminstrator, he handed over power to the democratically elected governor.
- Adamu Atta: He became the first executive governor of the state from October 1, 1979 till October 1, 1983 under NPN
- Cornelius Olatunji Adebayo: He was election under UPN and sworn in on October 1, 1983 till December 31, 1983 when there was a coup de’tat.
- Salaudeen Latinwo: He was appointed as the military administartor of the state after democracy was truncated by the military government, ruling as a military administrator from January 1984 to August 1985.
- Mohammed Ndatsu Umaru: August 1985 till December 1987
- Ahmed Abdullahi: December 1987 to July 1988
- Ibrahim Alkali: July 1988 till December 1989
- Alwali Kazir: December 1989 till January 1992
- Shaaba Lafiaji: January 1992 to November 1993 under SDP.
- Mustapha Ismail: 9 Dec 1993 till 14 Sep 1994
- Baba Adamu Iyam: 14 Sep 1994 till 22 August 1996
- Peter A.M. Ogar: From 22 August 1996 till August 1998
- Rasheed Shekoni: From August 1998 till 29 May 1999 and handed over power to the democratically elected civilian governor in the state.
- Mohammed Lawal: From 29 May 1999 till May 29, 2003 under ANPP
- Bukola Saraki: The incumbent Senate President was the governor of Kwara State begore he headed to The Senate. He ruled the state from May 29, 2003 till May 29 2011.
- Abdulfatah Ahmed: May 29 2011 till May 29, 2019.