What you need to know about the not-so-new national anthem, “Nigeria We Hail Thee”

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has signed into law the National Anthem Bill 2024, which reverses the country’s national anthem to the original “Nigeria, We Hail Thee.” 

Senate President Godswill Akpabio announced this change during a joint session of the National Assembly, which celebrated the Silver Jubilee of Nigeria’s 4th Republic. President Tinubu later joined the session, confirming that “Nigeria, We Hail Thee” will be the new national anthem.

BREAKING: Tinubu signs bill returning old national anthem into law

The National Assembly passed the bill on Tuesday, which aims to restore the anthem that was first adopted in 1960 after Nigeria gained independence but was later replaced in 1978 by “Arise, O Compatriots” during the military rule of President Olusegun Obasanjo.

The new law will require the country to revert to the old anthem, “Nigeria, we hail thee,” which was used until 1978. The lyrics were penned by Lillian Jean Williams, a British expatriate residing in Nigeria and received numerous criticisms, including the fact that its composer was not Nigerian.

The Lyrics of “Nigeria We Hail Thee”

Nigeria, we hail thee,

Our own dear native land,

Though tribe and tongue may differ,

In brotherhood, we stand,

Nigerians all, and proud to serve

Our sovereign Motherland.

Our flag shall be a symbol

That truth and justice reign,

In peace or battle, honour’d,

And this we count as gain,

To hand on to our children

A banner without stain.

O God of all creation,

Grant this our one request,

Help us to build a nation

Where no man is oppressed,

And so, with peace and plenty

Nigeria may be blessed.

Author

  • ChiAmaka Dike

    Chiamaka is the Features Editor at Marie Claire Nigeria. She is a woman who is passionate about God, women, and top-notch storytelling in all formats. Send all feature pitches her way - chiamaka@marieclaire.ng

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