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The Aba Nigeria Temple is the 121st operating temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church).

Aba Nigeria Temple
Abu Temple free use.jpg
Number 121 edit data
Dedicated 7 August 2005 (7 August 2005) by
Gordon B. Hinckley
Floor area 11,500 sq ft (1,070 m2)
Preceded by San Antonio Texas Temple
Followed by Newport Beach California Temple
Official websiteNews & images

Coordinates: 5°8′51.51839″N 7°21′24.1884″E / 5.1476439972°N 7.356719000°E / 5.1476439972; 7.356719000

An announcement was made on April 2, 2000, that a temple would be built in Aba, in the state of Abia, to serve the nation's 68,000 Latter-day Saints. This was the third temple to be built in Africa. The highly visible temple site is 2.5 hectares (6.3 acres) on the outskirts of Aba along the Ogbor River. A bridge had to be built over the river to provide access to the temple.

A groundbreaking ceremony and site dedication was held on February 23, 2002. More than 2,000 people were present at the ceremony including church leaders and members, tribal chiefs from the area, and government leaders. Construction began soon after the site dedication. An open house was held from June 18 to July 2, 2005, to allow people to tour the inside of the temple and learn about the ceremonies performed inside LDS temples.[1]

On Saturday August 6, 2005, the day before the temple was dedicated, a celebration was held, recounting the story of the area through song and dance. LDS Church president Gordon B. Hinckley dedicated the Aba Nigeria Temple on August 7, 2005. More than 7,000 people were present for the dedication.[1]

The Aba Nigeria Temple has a total floor area of 1,070 square metres (11,500 sq ft), two ordinance rooms, and two sealing rooms. The outer walls are made of Namibian pearl granite.



The temple was closed in mid-June 2009 because of violence in the Aba area.[2][3] In an e-mail to the Ogden Standard-Examiner a Nigeria temple worker reported an incident in which four gunmen were seen carrying AK-47s, with shooting reported in the area around the temple. Bullets from the shooting struck the guardhouse on the temple grounds.[3]

Additionally, the city of Aba and its Nigerian state of Abia had seen a marked increase in reported kidnappings, including the 2007 kidnapping of four missionaries near Port Harcourt.[3]

When asked about the reason for closing of the temple, LDS Church spokesman Scott Trotter said, "The safety of our temple visitors and workers is always our first concern. Incidents of violence in recent months in the area where the temple is situated are not necessarily related to the temple but could put church members at risk."[2]


In 2010, Alexander A. Odume was called as president of the Aba Nigeria Temple, the first Nigerian to serve as temple president. The temple opened largely on the basis of people scheduling ordinance work. By the latter part of 2011, the temple had resumed regular operations.[4]

In 2013 John A. Ihenkoro, a native of Aba then living in Abuja and serving as the stake patriarch there, was called as the next president of the Aba Temple.[5]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "collection on Aba Nigeria Temple articles", LDS Church News, archived from the original on 2014-05-13
  2. ^ a b Stack, Peggy Fletcher (August 26, 2009), "Violence forces closure of Nigeria's LDS temple", The Salt Lake Tribune, retrieved 2012-10-16
  3. ^ a b c Taylor, Scott (August 27, 2009), "Violence forces closure of LDS Nigeria temple", Deseret News, retrieved 2012-10-16
  4. ^ (unofficial) news archives for Aba Nigeria Temple
  5. ^ LDS Church News 20 July 2013

External linksEdit