On October 1, 1960, Nigeria gained its independence from the United Kingdom. The new monarchy incorporated a number of people with aspirations of their own sovereign nations. Newly independent, Nigeria's government was a coalition of conservative parties: the Nigerian People's Congress (NPC), a party dominated by Northerners and those of the Islamic faith, and the Igbo and Christian dominated National Council of Nigeria and the Cameroons (NCNC) led by Nnamdi Azikiwe, who became Nigeria's maiden Governor-General in 1960. Forming the opposition was the comparatively liberal Action Group (AG), which was largely dominated by the Yoruba and led by Obafemi Awolowo. The cultural and political differences between Nigeria's dominant ethnicities, the Hausa ('Northerners'), Igbo ('Easterners') and Yoruba ('Westerners'), were sharp.
Children's Day is celebrated on May 27 in Nigeria. It is a public holiday for Primary and Secondary school children. Depending on the state, a handful of children are selected to represent their schools in a march past for state officials.