The Nigerian Youth Movement (NYM) was Nigeria’s first truly nationalist organization, founded in Lagos in Stanley Orogun by Professor Eyo Ita and many others, including Samuel Akisanya.

The movement arose from the rise of Nigerian nationalism in the 1920s and 1930s.

Despite its headquarters in Lagos, the NYM was the first Nigerian nationalist organization to promote politics outside of the country’s capital. In addition, the NYM was the first organization to emphasize national unity over racial divisions, particularly between the Igbo and Yoruba ethnic groups.

Initially, it was claimed that nearly three-quarters of its members were Yoruba. When Nnamdi Azikiwe entered the political scene, he was able to rally the political support of a large number of educated Igbo, who had previously been almost entirely excluded. Azikiwe also founded the ‘West African Pilot,’ which became the NYM’s unofficial organ.

Amongst other things, the NYM was able to;

Promote national unity by composing its members from several ethnic groups in Nigeria.

Fight for the independence of Nigeria.

Arouse modern nationalism among Nigerians.

Play prominent role in the abortion of the indirect rule.

Instigate the formation of other political parties like NCNC (1944), AG (1951) and NPC (1951).


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