As the Nigerian Independence Day is getting closer, it’s important to once again remind ourselves about the essential components of a nation – the national symbols of Nigeria.
There are 10 national symbols of Nigeria, which include the Nigeria flag, the coat of arms, the language, the army, and, of course, the Nigerian national anthem. Find out who wrote the Nigerian national anthem and other fascinating facts about this national symbol!
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1. Nigerian national anthem and pledge
Once you hear the captivating sounds of the national anthem, you can’t help but wonder: “Who wrote the Nigerian national anthem and pledge?” Well, in fact, these two symbols of Nigeria were created by different individuals.
The pledge was written by Professor Felicia Adebola Adedoyin in 1976. The pledge is short but very powerful; here is how it goes:
“I pledge to Nigeria my country, to be faithful, loyal and honest. To serve Nigeria will all my strength, to defend her unity, uphold her honor and glory, so help me God.”
2. Who wrote the national anthem of Nigeria?
If you’re wondering who composed the Nigerian national anthem, you should know that there actually were several versions of the anthem used at different stages of Nigerian history. The old Nigerian national anthem is called Nigeria, We Hail Thee and was used from 1960 to 1978.
The lyrics for the original Nigerian national anthem song were written by Lillian Jean Williams, while the music was composed by Frances Berda. The first version of the anthem was quite impressive, but soon it was replaced by the anthem we all know and love today.
The current Nigerian national anthem song was adopted in 1978, and, unlike the first version of the anthem, this one was a collaborative effort – the Nigerian national anthem lyrics were taken from five winning submissions to the contest. The music was created by the Nigerian Police Band, led by Benedict E. Odiasse.
3. National anthem lyrics and music
There is no way that you could live in Nigeria and never listened to the anthem or heard its lyrics, but the truth is that the anthem is so compelling that it’s always worth hearing one more time. Here is the official version, performed by an orchestra:
And here is the Nigerian national anthem instrumental version – even without the lyrics it still has a powerful effect on the listeners.
The English lyrics, which are the most commonly used ones these days, speak to every Nigerian’s heart:
- Arise, O compatriots
- Nigeria’s call obey
- To serve our fatherland
- With love and strength and faith
- The labour of our heroes past
- Shall never be in vain
- To serve with heart and might
- One nation bound in freedom
- Peace and unity.
- Oh God of creation
- Direct our noble cause
- Guide our leaders right
- Help our youth the truth to know
- In love and honesty to grow
- And live in just and true
- Great lofty heights attain
- To build a nation where peace
- And justice shall reign.
There are also versions of the anthem in Yoruba, Hausa, and Ibo languages.
4. Second stanza of Nigerian national anthem
A few years ago Nigerians were surprised to learn that there was a second stanza of the Nigerian anthem that was previously undisclosed. However, there have been many efforts to revive the Nigerian national anthem second stanza as the official part of the anthem, and it has already gotten wider use at various events and national holidays. Check out the second stanza right now!
Oh God of creation, direct our noble cause
Guide our leaders right
Help our youth the truth to know
In love and honesty to grow
And living just and true
Great lofty heights attain
To build a nation where peace and justice shall reign.
These are the most important facts about the Nigerian national anthem. You can also find out who designed the Nigerian national flag from our blog!
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