CENTRAL MOSQUE, LAGOS
Contractors: Lodigiani Nigeria Ltd. Design
Consultancy: AIM Consultants Ltd
Year Completed: 1984.
The Lagos Central Mosque is located in the heart of Lagos Island, on Nnamdi Azikiwe Street, a few kilometres away from Tinubu Square in Lagos. The mosque was built in 1841 and used to be the national mosque until Abuja became the federal capital in place of Lagos. A commanding structure, it has existed for over 160 years undergoing renovations and expansions till its present glory.
The Lagos Central Mosque opened in the heart of the city in 1988, taking over the space from an earlier mosque, designed by the Jamat Muslim Council, that had become architecturally outdated. No fears of archaism can be found near this new design, built by Nigerian building company G. Cappa Ltd. Four stunning minarets reach into the sky, welcoming visitors to the mosque. The smaller two top the entrance and the two larger ones, placed on either side of the building, seem to guard it. Within, the chief imam maintains the mosque and leads its prayer services.
The Lagos Central Mosque is almost as well known for its location as for its structure. The mosque sits on a busy street in the Central Business District and is surrounded by shopping and traffic. It is popular with local Muslims and tourists, who may stop by in the middle of their shopping to say a prayer. (Meg Matthias)