In the year 1914, down to 1991, Lagos was well known as the seat of power of Nigeria, and it also served as both a political and economic capital. However, the plan for the movement of the capital from Lagos to Abuja was initiated by General Murtala Mohammed. Still, it was not actualised up until 1991, during President Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida. There were several reasons why the movement was being put into serious consideration. Some of these reasons are as follows:

Central Location
Lagos is located in the southwestern part of Nigeria and has a reasonable distance to some other cities in Nigeria. Although Lagos was one of the states that were developing very fast, there was a need to choose a location in the centre of Nigeria. Fortunately, Abuja fit the entire requirement, especially because of its location to serve as Nigeria’s capital.

Security was definitely another reason why Abuja was seen as the ideal capital of Nigeria for security reasons. Although the country was not engaged in any war with an international country, the civil war was enough warning that the location might be prone to attack, especially the air and sea attacks.
It was also indispensable to select a location in which the president, who also doubles as the commander in chief of the armed forces, could comfortably strategise and not be caught unaware in the eventuality of an attack of any kind.

Economic Political Factor
Lagos has always maintained the status as the business capital of West Africa. There was an urgent need to establish a political centre, considering Nigeria’s foreign policy in Africa. The choice of a practically unknown place to begin a political capital was necessary.
When Lagos was the capital, the state still had its own governors, which was politically unnecessary. It had to be discontinued when Abuja was named the capital, and a minister was also appointed to handle the city’s administrative management.

As at the time when Lagos was the capital of Nigeria, it was at the risk of being owned by the Yoruba people as their own land. But there was a need to get a settlement where the inhabitants of the place would be compensated and asked to vacate, just so the capital would be an independent city.
Abuja was scarcely inhabited, unlike other places in the country. By law, Abuja does not belong to any region, and no group or ethnicity can lay claim to it, but it is considered the belonging of the whole country.

Planned City
Although Lagos had been the capital of Nigeria since 1914, it was more or less favourable to the colonialist due to its location as a coastal town. Its proximity to the sea allowed the Europeans to make use of its sea route to engage Nigeria.

Also, by Independence, Lagos had grown in its own unplanned way. But the need arose to establish a city whose road network, business district, recreational centre, drainage system, etc. would be planned before time. Also, a team of experts were sent beforehand to examine the location, and after done, the City was selected as the capital.

Another factor that served as a reason for the change of Capital is that Lagos is quite overpopulated; the state’s landmass doesn’t match the number of persons in the state.

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