history of state creations in nigeria from 1967 till date

Geopolitical Zone With Highest Local Government Areas in Nigeria

Last Updated on March 11, 2022 by InfomediaNG

There are 774 Local Government Areas in Nigeria. They are spread across the six geopolitical zones of the country. They are charged with local government administration and they are known to be closer to the people at the grassroots.

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“Through local government, the effect of government can be brought to the people and the national resources and services can be distributed to all parts of the country, .

Leo Dare and Anthony Oyewole say in their Textbook of Government

In Nigeria, the creation of Local Government Councils was not only political but also a means of getting more allocation from the federal resources.

Takeaway:

  • North-West geopolitical zone has the highest number of local government areas in Nigeria, it has 186 LGAs
  • The South-East zone has 95 LGAs, making the zone with the lowest number of council areas.
  • The creation of council areas wasn’t based on the land areas of state governments by the military administration which created them.

For instance, if the landmass of states were to be used as parameters for local government creation in Nigeria, the likes of Niger, Borno, Taraba, Kaduna, and Bauchi states (top 5 largest Nigerian states by land area) would have had more LGAs than Kano.

In terms of land area, Kano is 20th on the table, surprisingly, Kano has the highest number of LGAs in Nigeria.

Constitutionally, the creation of local government areas is under the concurrent list, as such, some state governments like Lagos and Osun created Local Council Development Areas for easy administration.

Because of the legal tussle surrounding the creation of LCDAs by the administration of Bola Ahmed Tinubu in Lagos, LCDAs are not recognised by the Nigerian Constitution.

In this article, we’re focusing on the LGAs that were created by the FG and are clearly listed in the 1999 constitution.

So…

What’s the largest geopolitical zone by Local Government Areas?

North West (1)

The North-West is the third-largest geopolitical zone by land area. But in terms of the number of LGAs, the zone houses 186 LGAs, making the highest in Nigeria.

Kano has the highest while Zamfara state has the lowest in that zone

  1. Kano: 44
  2. Katsina: 34
  3. Jigawa: 27
  4. Kaduna: 23
  5. Sokoto: 23
  6. Kebbi: 21
  7. Zamfara: 14

Using population as a parameter, the North-West is the most populated geopolitical zone in Nigeria.

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South West (2)

There are 137 LGAs in the South-West geopolitical zone. Oyo State has the highest council areas in the South-West while Ekiti state has the lowest with just 14.

It must be noted that Bola Tinubu created 37 LCDAs when he was governor of the state. The LCDAs are managed by the Lagos state government.

Rauf Aregbesola took similar action when he was the governor of Osun State, but they are not included in this article.

  1. Oyo: 33
  2. Osun: 30
  3. Lagos: 20
  4. Ogun: 20
  5. Ondo: 18
  6. Ekiti: 16

South-South (3)

Also known as the Niger Delta region, South-South has the third-highest number of Local Government Areas in Nigeria. It has a total of 123 LGAs.

Akwa Ibom has the highest council areas in South-South while Bayelsa has the lowest LGAs with just eight.

  1. Akwa Ibom: 31
  2. Delta: 25
  3. Rivers: 23
  4. Cross River: 18
  5. Edo: 18
  6. Bayelsa: 8

North Central (4)

Fourth on the table is North-central with 121 LGAs. Niger State, the second-largest state by land area, has the highest in that region, the Federal Capital Territory which is also classified under North-Central has six.

  1. Niger: 25
  2. Benue: 23
  3. Kogi: 21
  4. Kwara: 16
  5. Nasarawa: 13
  6. Plateau: 17
  7. Federal Capital Territory: 6

North East (5)

The North-East has 112 local government areas. Borno has the highest in that region while Gombe state has the lowest with 11.

In terms of land area, the North-East is the biggest by land area. Sadly, some of the local council areas in Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe have been overrun by terrorists like Boko Haram and ISWAP.

In fact, some of the local government chairmen in the affected locations manage the council areas from the state capital for fear of insurgents.

  1. Adamawa: 21
  2. Bauchi: 20
  3. Borno: 27
  4. Gombe: 11
  5. Taraba: 16
  6. Yobe: 17

South-East:

The South-East geopolitical zone has the lowest number of local government areas in Nigeria, it has the lowest number of states, no wonder the region continually call for restructuring.

South-East 95 LGAs as against other regions that have over 100 LGAs.

Imo state has the highest number of LGAs in the South-East region while Ebonyi has the lowest in that zone.  

  1. Abia: 17
  2. Anambra: 21
  3. Ebonyi: 13
  4. Enugu: 17
  5. Imo: 27

Recap:

There are 744 local council areas in Nigeria, the North-West has the highest with 186 while the South-East has the lowest with 95 LGAs.

Geopolitical ZonesNumber of LGAsPosition
North-West1861
South-West1372
South-South1233
North-Central1214
North-East1125
South-East956
Local government in Nigeria by geopolitical zone
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