On August 27, 1991, the old Gongola State was turned into the new Taraba State and Adamawa State. The name of the state comes from the River Taraba, and it is in the Northeast of Nigeria.

Brief History of Taraba State And Local Government Areas
Map of Taraba State

States Sharing Boundaries With Taraba State

The states of Nasarawa and Benue are to the west of Taraba State. Plateau State is to the northwest, Bauchi State and Gombe State are to the north, Adamawa State is to the northeast, and the Republic of Cameroon is to the east and south.

Quick Snapshot of Taraba State

Total land area: 56,282 Km2
Local Government Areas: 16 LGAs: Ardo Kola, Bali, Donga, Gashaka, Gassol, Ibi, Jalingo, Karim Lamido, Kurmi, Lau, Sardauna, Takum, Ussa, Wukari, Yorro, and Zing.
Population: 3,249,970 (Male- 1,657,485 and Female- 1,592,485)
Vegetation: Tropical Savannah & Subtropical high land
Major crops: Millet, Sorghum, Maize, Cassava, Groundnut, Rice, Yam, Gum Arabic, Sugarcane and Cotton.
Solid minerals: Baryte, Diamond, Talc, Agates, Amethyst-Quatz, Barite, Cassitterite, Calcite, Bentolitic Clay, Bauxite, Galena, Gold, Flourite, Graphite, Quartz, Rutile, Uranium, Topaz, Sapphire, Zircon, Zinc Ore.
Current Governor 2022: Darius Ishaku (PDP)

It is mostly in the middle of Nigeria and has a rolling landscape with a few mountains that rise from the Cameroonian mountains and stretch almost the whole length of the state in both the north and south directions to meet the River Niger.

One interesting piece of history about the State is that it includes part of the Mambilla Region, which is known as the Bantu cradle because it has been inhabited for about 5,000 years. Taraba is known as “Nature’s gift to the nation” because it has a lot of different ethnic groups and cultures.

History of Taraba State

The military government of General Ibrahim Babangida took over on August 27, 1991, and made Taraba state out of the old Gongola state. The states of Nasarawa and Benue are to the west of Taraba state.

Plateau state is to the northwest, Bauchi and Gombe are to the north, Adamawa is to the northeast, and Northwest Region in Cameroon is to the south. The main rivers in the state are the Benue, Donga, Taraba, and Ibi.

They start in the Cameroonian mountains and stretch almost the whole length of the country from north to south until they reach the River Niger. The average temperature for the year in Taraba state is 33°C, but it gets very cold in January and rains a lot in August.

The amount of rain in Taraba state is 40.35 percent, and the humidity there is 54.98%. The average temperature in the state in March is 40.44°C, and the average wind speed is 8.84km/h.

Ethnic Groups Dominating Taraba State

People from the Mumuye, Fulani, Jenjo, Karimjo, Wurkum, and Kona tribes live in the northern part of the state most of the time. People from the Jukun, Chamba, Tiv, Kuteb, and Ichen tribes live in the southern part of the state most of the time.

Most of the people who live in the central region are Mambila, Chamba, Fulani, and Jibawa. In Taraba State, there are more than 77 different tribes, each with its own language.

Taraba State Local Government Areas

There are sixteen (16) Local Government Areas (or LGAs) in Taraba state. Elected chairmen run each LGA. Here is a list of the local government areas:

  1. Ardo Kola
  2. Bali
  3. Donga
  4. Gashaka
  5. Gassol
  6. Ibi
  7. Jalingo
  8. Karim Lamido
  9. Kurmi
  10. Lau
  11. Sardauna
  12. Takum
  13. Ussa
  14. Wukari
  15. Yorro
  16. Zing

Occupations of Taraba State Citizens

Agriculture is what most people in Taraba state do for a living. Coffee, tea, groundnuts, and cotton are all cash crops that are grown in the state. Maize, rice, sorghum, millet, cassava, and yam are also grown in large enough amounts to sell.

Also, there are a lot of cattle, sheep, and goats, especially on the Mambilla Plateau and in the Benue and Taraba valleys. People in Taraba state also raise chickens, rabbits, and pigs on a fairly large scale.

People who live along the banks of the rivers Benue, Taraba, Donga, and Ibi fish all year long. In different parts of the state, people also make a living by doing things like pottery, weaving, dying, making mats, carving, embroidery, and blacksmithing.

Tribes In Taraba State

Local Government Areas:
Ardokola: Fulfulde, Kona, Mumuye
Bali: Fulfulde; Ichen Language Fam; Gbaya, Northwest; Jibu; Jukun Takum; Kam; Mumuye; Ndoola; Chamba Dakka; chamba leko; Tiv;
Donga: Ichen Language, Ekpan, Chamba Leko, Tiv.
Gashaka: Ndoola, Fulfulde, Chamba Daka; Yamba Tiv
Gassol: Fulfulde, Wapan, Tiv
Ibi: Duguri; Dza, Tiv, Fulfulde, Wanu
Jalingo: Fulfulde, Kona, Mumuye;
Karim Lamido: Karimjo Jenjo Fulfulde; Dadiya; Dza; Jiba; Jiru; kodei; Kulung; Kyak; Laka; Munga Lelau; Loo; Mághdì; Mak; Munga Doso; Mumuye; Nyam; Pangseng; Wurkun-Anphandi; Shoo-Minda-Nye; Yandang; Hõne; Kwa; Pero.
Kurmi: Ndoro; Ichen language; Tigun language; Abon; Bitare.
Lau: Fulfulde, Dza; Loo; Yandang, Laka
Takum: Mashi; Bete; Ichen Language; Jukun Takum; Kapya; Kpan; Kpati; Kuteb; Lufu; Acha language Acha; Tiv; Yukuben
Wukari: Jukun, Ichen Language; Ekpan; Kpati; Kulung; Tarok; Tiv; Wapan
Sardauna: Fulfulde, Áncá; Batu; Buru; Fum; Lamnso’; Lidzonka; Limbum; Mambila; Mbembe, Tigon; Mbongno; Mvanip; Nde-Gbite; Ndoola; Ndunda; Nshi; Somyev; Viti; Vute; Yamba, kaka
Yorro: Mumuye, Fulfulde
Zing: Mumuye, Nyong; Rang; Yandang
Others: Ussa,  Kuteb, Akum, Bukwen, Esimbi, Fali of Baissa, Jiba, Njerep, Tha, Yandang, Yotti, Ywom

Culture of The People of Taraba State

The government has worked hard to improve tourist spots like the Mambilla Tourist Center, Gumpti Park, and the game reserve in Gashaka, as well as the Karimjo Obedah Festival in Karim Lamido and the Nwunyu fishing festival in Ibi, which is held every year in April and features canoe races, swimming competitions, and cultural dances.

Purma of the Chamba in Donga, Takum and Jibu culture dance in Bali, Tagba of the Acha people in Takum, Kuchecheb of the Kutebs in Takum and Ussa are some other festivals.

Kati of the Mambilla and many other people. Taraba is called “Nature’s gift to the nation” because it is a rich state with many different ethnic groups, such as the Kuteb, Chamba, Yandang, Mumuyes, Mambila, Karimjo, Wurkums, Jenjo, Jukun, Ichen, Tiv, Kaka, Pena, Kambu, kodei, Wawa, Vute, Fulani, Hausa, and Ndola.

Tribe of Mambilla in Taraba State One interesting piece of history about the state is that it includes part of the Mambilla Region, which is known as the Bantu cradle because it has been inhabited for about 5,000 years (Schwartz, 1972; Zeitlyn & Connell, 2003). Read about Yobe State Here.

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