Nigerian Coat Of Arm: This article serves as a revelation to the untold story and facts behind the creation of the Nigerian coat of arms, with particular reference to the background that led to its creation, coupled with the meaning of every symbolic feature on the coat of arm.
The need to write on this sensitive symbol of our nationhood was as a result of the death of history lessons in Nigeria. Consequently, most Nigerians are ignorant of the meaning of this National symbol, and the reason for its establishment and adoption.
Nonetheless, this article will tell you everything you need to know about the Nigerian Coat of arms. Learn more below;
Also Read: Public Holidays In Nigeria
Picture of the Nigerian Coat Of Arms
The image above is the Nigerian coat of arm, and am sure you’ve seen it before on Nigerian currencies, haven’t you? what it is, and why it was made should be the question on your mind by now. The answers to these questions are explained below.
About the Nigerian Coat Of Arms?
The Nigerian coat of arms is a unique symbol that represents Nigeria’s unity in diversity, state power, and authority. This coat of arms was officially adopted in 1975 as the central symbol that officially represents the Nigerian federation.
Before the adoption of this symbol, the different regions that made up Nigeria then used to have their own coat of arms. And that could account for the high level of disunity and lack of national consciousness in Nigeria then. The Nigerian coat of arms has 7 core features. these core features shall be explained later in this post.
Why was the Coat of Arm Created in Nigeria?
The Nigerian coat of arms was made for the purpose of instilling national consciousness in the sub-consciousness of Nigerian nationals. Nigeria came into existence by means of forceful amalgamation between the northern and southern protectorate by the British authority in 1914.
These people that were forced to live together as a country had nothing in common, in terms of value systems and culture. Hence, even after the amalgamation in 1914 and independence in 1960, there was still no national consciousness or unity, as the different groups that make up Nigeria still see themselves more from their ethnic stand like IBO, YORUBA, HAUSA, etc rather than Nigerians.
This seeming ethnic consciousness over national values was part of the reasons that led to the infamous Nigerian civil war of 1967-70, which took the lives of over 3million Nigerians.
However, shortly after the civil war, which obviously increased the rate of disunity in Nigeria, there was a need to create the national coat of arms, which was designed as a visual reminder to Nigerians that we are one people and one nation, despite our ethnic differences.
Features of Nigerian Coat Of Arm and What They Stand For.
The Nigerian coat of arm is made of 7 significant features and these are;
- A black shield
- Two white wavy bands on the shield, which form the letter “Y”
- Two horses on either side of the shield
- Some flowers at the base
- An eagle standing on the shield
- The wreath (with green and white bands) upon which the eagles stands
- The nation’s motto on the band around the base of the shield
The Black Shield represents Nigeria’s fertile soil.
The Two Horses on the side of the shield represents Dignity.
The Green and White Band is on top of the shield and it represents the rich soil of Nigeria
The Eagle at the top of the shield, standing on the Green and White band represent strength.
The Red Flowers at the base is the cactus spectabilis. This is the Nigerian national flower. The flower in the national Coat of Arms represents the beauty of the nation as it is found all over Nigeria.
The White Letter ”Y” represents the two great rivers of Nigeria, which are River Niger and River Benue.
The Band Around The Base carries the Nigerian National Motto since 1978 ”Unity and Faith, Peace and Progress”. The motto was formerly ”Peace, Unity, and Freedom”.