Jaja of Opobo

(c. 1821—1891) merchant and king of Opobo

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(died 1891) Nigerian merchant prince. A former slave, he became head of the Anna Pepple trading house at Bonny in the Niger Delta, acting as a middleman between the coastal markets and the Nigerian interior. He established (1869) his own state at Opobo on the Gulf of Guinea. From here he was able to prevent rival supplies from reaching the coast. In 1873 Jaja was recognized as King of Opobo. In the 1880s Jaja opposed increasing British influence in the area, and in 1887 was deported by Britain to the West Indies.

From A Dictionary of World History in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: World History.

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