The Diocese of Abuja corresponds territorially with the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja, which is estimated at 950,000 square kilometers in area, and has an estimated population of 3.5 million. Its Catholic population is about 550,115.
The wish of the Nigerian Catholic Hierarchy to have an Ecclesiastical circumscription corresponding to the Civil Federal Capital Territory found expression in the late 1979. Their wish received the approval of the Sacred Congregation for Propagation of the faith and the Evangelization of the Peoples, and the Independent Mission of Abuja was established on November 6, 1981. By a simultaneous decree, His Eminence, Dominic Cardinal Ignatius Ekandem, then Bishop of Ikot Ekpene diocese was appointed Ecclesiastical Superior of the new jurisdiction, with authority to perform all acts necessary for the rule of this mission, according to the prescriptions of Canon Law and the special instructions of this congregation.
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