Home Facts Nigeria Coat of Arms & Nigerian Flag: History & Meaning

Nigeria Coat of Arms & Nigerian Flag: History & Meaning

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The Nigeria coat of arms was officially adopted in 1975. It represents the country’s symbol of national unity, state power. It was created together with the National Flag and was approved by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II on 7 December 1971.

Nigeria's coat of arms
Nigeria’s coat of arms

It was designed by a Bahamian artist and clergyman, Rev. Dr. Hervis L. Bain, Jr.

Features of The Nigeria Coat of Arms and Meaning

The Nigeria coat of arms has seven permanent features, symbolizing a particular entity or virtue about Nigeria:

  • A black shield which represents the fertile soil in Nigeria.
  • Two white wavy bands on the shield, which form the letter “Y” represent rivers Niger and Benue, the country’s main inland waterways.
  • Two horses on either side of the shield represent the dignity of Nigeria.
  • Some flowers which are yellow flowers at the base is the Coctus spectabilis, a specie of flower that grows in all parts of Nigeria.
  • An eagle standing on the shield represents the strength of Nigeria
  • The wreath (with green and white bands) upon which the eagles stands represents the rich agricultural produce of Nigeria.
  • The nation’s motto on the band around the base of the shield is written, “Unity and Faith, Peace and Progress”, this motto was adopted in 1978. Before that time, the country’s motto was formerly “Peace, Unity, and Freedom”.

The Nigerian Flag: History & Meaning

The flag of Nigeria was designed by Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi in 1959 at the age of 23 during a competition. It was officially used on 1st October, 1960, the same day Nigeria got her independence from British rule.

flag of Nigeria
Nigeria’s flag

Akinwumi who saw an advert that submissions for a new design for the national flag of Nigeria was ongoing in 1959 had his education at Norwich Technical College in London, England. His design was finally accepted and had a red radiating sun badge in the middle of the white vertical band with two green bands supporting the white by the sides.

Meaning

The Nigerian flag has three vertical colours. They are green, white, green. The green stripes represent Nigeria’s natural wealth, while the white stripe represents peace.

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