The Population of Lagos State

In this article, we’ll be giving a detailed explanation of the population of Lagos state and their estimated population in years to come.  Lagos state is a port city and also the most populous state in Nigeria. The metropolitan area originated on the island of Lagos Island. The city has expanded to the mainland west of the lagoon. In 2016, Lagos’s population was estimated at 21 million and that makes it the second-most populous city in West Africa.

The population of Lagos state as of this year is 15.3 million within the City proper. Lagos is a major financial center and the economic hub of Nigeria at large. Lagos is the most developed state in Nigeria and is also listed among the top 10 of the world’s fastest-growing cities and urban areas. 

History of Lagos State Population

Lagos initially emerged as the home to the Awori Subgroup of the Yoruba of West Africa. It later emerge as a port city that originated in a collection of islands that are contained in the present-day Local government area of Lagos Island, eti-osa, Amuwo odofin, and Apapa. 

Due to rapid urbanization, the City expanded to the West of the Lagoon to include areas in the present-day Lagos mainland, Ajeromi Ifelodun, and Surulere. This led to the classification of Lagos to the mainland and Island. 

The City was governed directly by the federal government through the Lagos city council until the creation of Lagos State in 1967. This led to the splitting of Lagos into seven Local governments and the addition of other towns which now made it 13 local government areas. 

The state capital was later moved to Ikeja in 1976 and the Federal capital was moved to Abuja in 1991. Although Lagos is regarded as a city, the present-day Lagos is known as Metropolitan Lagos. 

The exact population of the state is disputed. According to the 2006 population census, Lagos was recorded to have about 8 million people. The figure was disputed by the Lagos state government which later released its own population data sitting Lagos at approximately 16 million people. 

Lagos State Population Density and City Size

Lagos state covers an immense area coming in with a total of 1,171.28 square kilometers. With the population growth currently exceeding at least 17 million residents, the population density is around 6,871 residents per square kilometer. 

Lagos Population Growth

Lagos has experienced tremendous growth from just 1.4 million in 1970 to reach 21 million. The state now generates 25% of Nigeria’s Gross domestic product. Lagos is the Largest City in Africa

In about 25 years to come and the rate at which the country is growing, Lagos state population would have amounted to 300 million. By 2050, the population is expected to have doubled up more which will make it the third-largest city in the world. 


Having read about the population of Lagos state, it is very glaring that Lagos state is the hub center of Nigeria. Also, inhabitants of other states also reside in Lagos state due to their buoyant economy. Share your views about the population of Lagos state in the comment section.