Potiskum, the largest city in Yobe


Potiskum is a local government area in Yobe State, Nigeria.

It had an area of 559 square kilometers (216 sq mi) and a population of 205,876 at the 2006 census. The postal code of the area is 622101.

Potiskum is the main settlement for the Ngizim, Kare-kare, and Bolewa people. The current Emir of Potiskum, Mai Umar Ibn Wuriwa Bauya, was awarded a national honour of officer of the order of the Niger (OON) by a former President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo GCFR in 2004.

Also headquarter of Fika Emirate council is located in Potiskum. That is why some people say Potiskum has two Emirs.

Potiskum has been a thriving trade hegemony in Yobe State because of its strategic position as a centre of commerce, learning, spiritual and cultural revival. People from neighbouring Borno, Jigawa, Kano, Bauchi, and Gombe state, and numerous others from Niger, Chad, Cameroon, Benin Republic, and Central African Republic (CAR) have stakes in the ‘biggest cattle market in Sub-Saharan Africa,’ which is situated in Potiskum. And also have one of the biggest correctional facilities in Nigeria.

Potiskum cattle market

Potiskum is the largest city in Yobe State with a booming business in the area. It has one of the largest cattle markets in Africa and the largest in West Africa. Most of the cattle are transported to other parts of the country.

Potiskum Grain Market

Close to the cattle market is the Potiskum grain/millet market. It was estimated in 2008 to sell 500 bags of grain on market day. The millet market is the largest in north-east Nigeria. Most products are transported to other parts of the country and neighboring countries.

Potiskum Airstrip

Potiskum Airstrip is located in the city’s GRA from the western part of the town along Kano road. The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) office in the field, which is supposed to be responsible for the transmission of air traffic information to aircraft flying over the airfield, is not fully functional as the Omni-Directional Range Equipment installed there was not equipped with computers to enable the workers scientifically spot planes hovering over Potiskum.

The airport came into being during the scramble for Africa by the colonialists because Potiskum was a sprawling town in the north that was earlier annexed by Germany before the United Kingdom took over.

The aim of constructing the airport was to make the movements of the white men in and out of Potiskum easy because the town was also the gateway to other nearby towns in the north, which had enhanced trading activities and other associated commercial services in the region.


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