Igbo-Ora is a city and the headquarters of Ibarapa Central, Oyo State, south-western Nigeria, situated 80 kilometres (50 mi) north of Lagos. In 2006 the population of the town was approximately 72,207 people. In 2017 the population is estimated to be around 278,514 people.
The town is the location of Oyo State College of Agriculture. The college has contributed significantly to the socio-economic and demographic development of the town. The Oyo state government has just approved a High Court of Justice. The federal government is also said to have approved the location of a police training college in the town.
The unusually large number of twin births in the region have earned the town the nickname Twin Capital of the World. This phenomenon of a large number of twin births is not unique to Igbo-Ora; it has also been observed in the town of Kodinji in India, and Cândido Godói in Brazil. In Igbo-Ora, research has suggested that the multiple births could be related to the eating habits of the women in the region. Though no direct relation between dietary intake and twin births has been proven, a research study carried out at the University of Lagos Teaching Hospital has suggested that a chemical found in Igbo-Ora women and the peelings of a widely consumed tuber (yams) could be responsible.
A possible explanation that the large number of twins being born here could simply be a matter of genetics.
Obe Alade, a descendant of Alaafin of Oyo with his family migrated from Oyo town several centuries ago following a chieftaincy tussle and when he and his kinsmen lost the contest, (As usual in those days, once you lost any chieftaincy tussle, people tend to leave the town). While coming from Oyo town, Obe Alade and his kinsmen came with idols mainly Egungun and Alaale which they worshiped.
Obe Alade and his family first settled at a forest name after them, a forest of immigrant (Awon to sako wa lati Oyo). Igbo-Asako, about three kilometers away from the present-day Igbo-Ora market.
It was at Igbo-Asako that Obe Alade became the first Baale of Igbo-Ora (Now Olu of Igbo-ora) as usual for a founder, hence the appellation “Omo Igbo-Ora Lasako”. The scarcity of drinking water and mosquitoes’ bites drove out the Igbo-Ora people From Igbo-Asako forest.
Hence the appellation “Bi o ri emo ri, ki o nso ni Igbo-Ora Lasako, abongangan ibe ju esi ode lo, yanmuyanmu ibe ju ikamudu” meaning “If you want trouble, go to Igbo-Ora in Asako where mosquitoes are as big as hunter flies and bigger than other insects
The Igbo-Ora people of Igbo Ayin to find another forest which was in a marshy and swampy area (“Ira”) an unseasonal river called Igbo-Ira (Igbo inu Ira) and the present site. It is here the town derived its name when people refer to the people of the settlement as Omo Igbo-Ira later it was shortened as Igbo-Ora.
At each of the above settlements people name the town with a prefix of the forest:
This led to the appellation they gave to the people “Omo Igbo-Ora Lasako” in other to link them with their Original settlement.
The main economic activity in Igboora is farming. Obasanjo farms is one of the major mechanized farms and engages in poultry, cash crops and fishery. Subsistent agriculture and hunting is pretty predominant also. Service-based industries include two banks, the Owotutu line of businesses and NITEL sub-station.
Most salaried jobs revolve around teaching, local government employment and the few private based businesses. The West-North Abeokuta-Sokoto highway, which pass through the town, serves as a potential link to economic prosperity.