13 Interesting Facts About The Nigerian Flag

13 Interesting Facts About The Nigerian Flag

The Nigerian flag has a lot of interesting flags that are not well known. Here are 13 interesting facts about the Nigerian flag your kids need to know

Every country has a flag, her symbol of identity, to each her own. Nigeria has hers, three-block of two colours, with white in the middle, flanked on both sides by green. Just like every country's flag, the Nigerian flag has stories and facts behind it. And your kids need to know everything they need to know about their country's flag. 

In 1959, a year before Nigeria's independence, through an advertisement in the newspaper, Nigeria called for citizens to submit designs of flags for consideration as the national flag. A certain Michael Taiwo Akinkumi, who was a student of Norwood Technical College in London then, saw the advertisement and mailed in his entry to the panel in Lagos. Mr Taiwo was contacted, having emerged as the winner, clinching 100 pounds ($281 in 1959). But his original design was modified, a bit different from the flag we have today. 

13 Facts to teach your kids about the Nigerian flag 

Nigerian flag

Designing the flag of a whole country is a great feat that deserves a place in the history books and more. Though Mr Taiwo did get a place in the history books, but that was just about it. After that it was as if he went into oblivion, forgotten by the country, something that didn't sit well with most Nigerians. Subsequently, President Goodluck Jonathan got wind of the matter, learnt that the man was never honoured for his service to the country. Below are facts you can teach your kids about their country's flag.


  • The Nigerian flag was designed in 1959 by Michael Taiwo Akinkumi, a 23-year-old at the time. His design was modified. It had a red sun in the middle. 
  • Michael Taiwo Akinkumi was never recognised until 29th of September 2014 when he was presented with a national award as an Officer of the Order of the Federal Republic (OFR) by President Jonathan.
  • The Nigerian flag is made of a white vertical stripe in the middle and green stripes on both sides. The white going through the middle symbolises the River Niger intersecting the country. Also, it symbolises peace and unity. While the green on both sides symbolises vegetation and agriculture. 
  • The flag has a dimension. For a large flag: 1.2m in breadth and 2.4m in length. If it's a medium flag: 0.9m in breadth and 1.8m in length. For a small flag: 0.6m in breadth and 1.2m in length. 
  • The flat went up officially on the 1st of October 1990.
  • The Nigerian flag is the flag of flags. No other flag is ever to be placed above it. 
  • When the Nigerian flag is worn out, it is supposed to be replaced immediately as this is seen as disrespect to the country. 

The Coat of arms

Nigerian flag

  • The president's flag is known as the presidential flag, and it's a bit different from what citizens use. The presidential flag has the coat of arms in the middle. 
  • On some occasions, the flag is laid out horizontally flat. And the other time the flag isn't flying as high as possible is during state memorials and funerals. 
  • During a procession, the flag bearer must be in front, neatly and smartly dressed. And if there's another non-national flag present, it must come behind.
  • Only special national dignitaries are to display the national flag on their vehicles. And it should be positioned at the right fender of the car. 
  • To make sure the national flag is never used inappropriately, it is governed by the Coat-of-Arms and Flag Ordinance of 1960. Anybody who flies the flag in a bad state will be guilty of an offence against the ordinance. 
  • The national flag is a constant reminder of the country's unity, freedom, and liberty. 


The presidential flag used to look different from what it looks like now. It had a red badge inside a green field. Then inside the red badge is another black badge, with a wavy Y in white. 

Read more: Teach Your Kids Why Independence Day Is Important

Source: Brittanica

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Written by

Lydia Ume