Lagos is the most populous city in Nigeria, the largest country in Africa. The metropolitan area, an estimated 300 square kilometers, is a group of islands endowed with creeks and a lagoon. Lagos is projected to be one of the world's five largest cities. In an effort to reduce massive urbanization in the metropolitan area, the Federal Government is in the process of moving the capital to Abuja. The original settlers of Lagos, or Eko as it is called by the indigenous population, were of Benin and Awori Eko heritage.
The city began in the fifteenth century as a Portuguese trading post exporting ivory, peppers, and slaves. After the war, migration to the city, coupled with huge waves of refugees and migrants from other African countries, produced a population boom that has continued to the present day. Since 1985, state urban renewal plans have concentrated on upgrading the environment of slum communities by building roads and drainage channels and providing water supply, electricity, schools and health clinics. With cooperation from the citizens, success has been recorded in a number of pilot urban renewal schemes, which focus on building roads and drainage channels and providing water supply, electricity, schools and health clinics.
Lagos is the commercial and industrial hub of Nigeria, with a GNP triple that of any other West African country. Lagos has greatly benefited from Nigeria's natural resources in oil, natural gas, coal, fuel wood and water. Light industry was prevalent in post-independence Nigeria and petroleum-related industry dominated in the 1970's, directly affecting the rapid growth of Lagos.
Lagos experiences a tropical savanna climate. There are two rainy seasons, with the heaviest rains falling from April to July and a lighter rainy season coming between October and November. There is a short relatively dry spell in August and September and a longer dry season from December to March. Monthly rainfall between May and July averages over 300 mm while in August and September it is down to 75 mm and in January as low as 35 mm. The major dry season is accompanied by harmattan winds from the Sahara Desert, which becomes strong between December and early February. The average temperature in January is 27°C and for July it is 25°C. On average the hottest month is March; with a mean temperature of 29°C while July is the coolest month.
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