Niger Religion and Languages

By | March 5, 2021

According to franciscogardening, Niger is an African nation located in the Sahel region. It has a population of approximately 22 million people and covers an area of 1,267,000 square kilometers. The capital city is Niamey, which is also the largest city in the country. The official language of Niger is French but other languages such as Hausa and Zarma are also spoken. Niger has a long history as an independent state with strong ties to France and other former French colonies. Its economy relies mainly on agriculture and livestock production, supplemented by oil production. With a GDP of $18 billion USD in 2020, Niger remains one of the poorest countries in Africa.


Due to the difficult nature conditions, the population is very unevenly distributed. The population is concentrated in the southern savannah area, where the largest cities are located.

Despite the population concentration to the southern parts, the country is West Africa’s least urbanized country; In 2019, only 16 percent of the population lived in one of the country’s cities, of which Niamey (1.1 million residents, 2012), Zinder (253,800) and Maradi (188,000) are the largest. According to UN estimates, about 1/5 of the population is nomads.

According to Countryaah, the population of Niger is half of the agricultural hausa (53 percent), living along the border with Nigeria. The other agricultural peoples are djerma-songhai (21 percent) in the Niger valley and kanuri (4 percent), both of whom speak Nilo-Saharan languages, and baqqara (2 percent) on Lake Chad. The latter speak Shuwa-Arabic dialects. The livestock-eating fulani (7 percent), who speak the Niger-Congo language, are predominantly in the country’s east, while nomadic camel-eating Tuaregs (11 percent) are concentrated in the Aïr massif. In addition, there are a few thousand Frenchmen living in the country.


Official Language of Niger

The official language is French. Among the approximately 20 indigenous languages, three of the major African language families are represented: Afro-Asian languages ​​(including Hausa and Tuaregic), Niger-Congo languages ​​(including Fulani) and Nilo-Saharan languages ​​(including Kanuri and Songhai). Hausa, which is spoken as a mother tongue by about half the population, and songhai, which is spoken by about a quarter, are also used as interpersonal languages. Compare Population above.


In Niger, (2010) more than 90% of the population are Muslims. Most of these are Sunni Muslims while a minority, about 5%, are Shiites. Islam came to this part of Africa in the 15th century partly with the expansion of the Songhairik west, partly with merchants from Mahgreb and Egypt. Others who later contributed to the spread of Islam in the country were Tuaregs in the 17th century and Sufic fraternities in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The Christians are few in Niger, according to some estimates only about 60,000 people. The Christians (both Catholics and Protestants) are found mainly in southern Niger and among families of colonial origin, but also among immigrants from neighboring countries such as Benin, Togo and Ghana. Bahai has a few thousand followers mainly located to Niamey and the Niger River’s West Bank, which borders Burkina Faso. Almost 5% are mainly practitioners of indigenous African religion. Various communities with links to the Pentecostal movement have about 10,000 members in Niger.

In the 2010 constitution, and also in previous constitutions, the distinction between state and religion is emphasized. Both the Constitution and other laws provide for religious freedom, which also works in practice.

  • Follow abbreviationfinder to see what is the meaning of NG in geography. It can stand for Niger. Click this site to see other possible meanings of this acronym.

The following days are national holidays: Mawlid (Prophet Muhammad’s birthday), Easter Day, Id al-fitr, Laylat al-Qadr (the day the first verses of the Qur’an were revealed to Muhammad), Id al-adha (in memory of Abraham being prepared to sacrificing his son), Muharram’s (the first month of the Islamic calendar), the first day and the Christmas day.

Niger Population by Religion

Demography and economic geography. – Internal state of north-central Africa. The population (17,129,076 residents at the 2012 census, 18,534,802 residents in 2014, according to an estimate by UNDESA, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs), which grows by 3.9% a year (average age 15 years), is among the poorest in the world, plagued by food insecurity and periodic droughts, floods and locust infestations. In the capital, Niamey (1,011,277 residents), Almost a third of the urban population lives; other cities are Maradi (267.249 residents) and Zinder. The No. is in last place in the Human Development Index (life expectancy, 58.4 years in 2013; access to water, 52%; literacy, 19%) and among the lowest for GDP per capita with purchasing power parity (PPA), $ 1032 in 2014. Insecurity in the region contributes to aggravating the situation: the Niger welcomes 96,000 people in need of humanitarian aid (including 53,000 refugees from Mali and Nigeria); moreover, 36,000 Nigeriens are themselves displaced to other countries. Thanks to relative political stability (apart from the 2010 coup), the economy has grown by an average of 5% in the last decade, supported by foreign investments (construction, energy), uranium (4th world producer) and, since 2012, oil.