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  1. Ibrahim Imam1,
  2. Rufus Akinyemi2
  1. 1Neurology Department, Torbay Hospital, Torquay, UK
  2. 2Neurology Department, Federal Medical Centre, Abeokuta, Nigeria
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ibrahim Imam, Neurology Department, Torbay Hospital, Lowes Bridge, Torquay TQ2 7AA, UK; ibrahimimam2000{at}

Statistics from


Nigeria, the ‘Giant of Africa’, with a land area of about 920 000 km2, lies on the West African coast (figures 1–3). Its projected population in 2015 is 180 million, making it the most heavily populated African country, and the seventh most populous nation in the world. Nigeria comprises 36 states, with its administrative capital in Abuja. It has over 250 ethnic groups and languages, and its official language is English. Nigeria attained independence from Britain on 1 October 1960 and for much of its early history was governed by military regimes, interrupted by spells of democratically elected governments. Nigeria has, however, just had its longest phase of uninterrupted civilian rule, and, for the first time, a ruling party handed over power to an opposition party on 29 May 2015. Nigeria has the largest gross domestic product in Africa, and its economy, while relying heavily on the petroleum sector, also depends on agriculture and commerce. However, Nigeria spends <4% of its gross domestic product on health, and healthcare delivery is inadequate. This is reflected by a high infant mortality rate of 74/1000 live births, a maternal mortality of 560/100 000 live births and life expectancy of <53 years.

Figure 1

Map of Nigeria.

Figure 2

Nigerian flag.

Figure 3

Nigerian coat of arms.

Medical education in Nigeria

The educational system in Nigeria is structured into nursery, primary and secondary school stages, followed by enrolment into …

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