Nigeria is a multilingual country where an estimated 505 languages are spoken of which Igbo, Yoruba and Hausa are the major languages with about 18 million speakers each. English was first introduced in Nigeria with the establishment of trading contacts on the West African coast by the British in the sixteenth century. This resulted in a form of Nigerian Pidgin, which probably is the predecessor of present-day Nigerian English Pidgin, which is mainly used for inter-ethnic communication. English began to be formally studied in Nigeria from the middle of the nineteenth century on. It now has a geographical spread throughout the country and is used in predominantly formal contexts such as government, education, literature, business, commerce, media, international communication and as a lingua franca in social interaction among the educated élite. It is treated as "the official language of the country" although there is no government statute or decree specifying this. Currently, about 20% of the population have some command of English and use it regularly in their daily lives.
Population: 140 million

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Nigerian newspapers online