The Effect Of Community Mobilization For Rural Development In Nigeria

Project and Seminar Material for Environmental Science

The Effect Of Community Mobilization For Rural Development In Nigeria


Abstract


This study examined community mobilization for rural development in, Nigeria to ascertain the relationship between lack of increased awareness and rural infrastructure; and lack of increased participation of community members and rural development. Adopted for this study is a survey design because of the large number of the respondents that were involved. A questionnaire was the instrument used to collect the data of the respondents. Chi-square statistics was used to test the hypotheses. The result revealed that lack of increased awareness impact negatively on rural infrastructure. Also, lack of increased participation of community members has impacted negatively on rural development as a whole. We commend that government needs to educate and sensitize community members to actively participate in community development as stake holders and also need to provide them with financial support for awareness campaign. We conclude that community mobilization is sacrosanct for the enlightenment of community members towards enhancing rural development.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Rural areas are a key sector in every nation’s economy and their rapid development and modernization have gained the attention of policy makers and governments all over the world. This is because a sizeable majority of the population lives therein therefore; the future of the country depends largely on it. community mobilization
The American Bureau of Census classifies a group of people living in a community having a population of not more than 2,500 people as rural, whereas in Nigeria, the Federal Office of Statistics defines a community with less than 20,000 people as rural. According to Afolayan (1995), rural areas can be easily identified by various criteria, apart from population. Such criteria include the level of infrastructural development i.e. road networks, educational institutions, water supply, electricity, health facilities, communication, etc. Other criteria used include Occupation, Housing, Extent of community planning etc.

Typically, rural dwellers are less vocal, characterized by a culture of poverty, as most people live barely above subsistence level (Laah et al, 2013). Rural areas in developing countries are usually deprived of the basic needs of life such as housing, medical care, postal communication, education, transport etc.

Specifically, rural areas refer to geographical areas that lie outside the densely built-up environment of towns, cities and the sub-urban villages and whose inhabitants are engaged primarily in agriculture as well as the most basic of rudimentary form of secondary and tertiary activities (Ezeah, 2005). Rural area, which is the opposite of an urban area, refers to the country side whose population engages mainly in primary production activities like agriculture, fishing, and rearing of livestock (Ele, 2006). About 90 percent of the rural labour workforce engages directly or indirectly in agriculture (Nyagba, 2009).

The rural sector of Nigeria is, very vital to the socio-economic development of the nation. According to Nyagba (2009), the most important sector of the Nigerian population is the rural areas. This is because the rural sector is the major source of capital formation for the country and a principal market for domestic and raw materials for industrial processes (Ugwuanyi and Emma, 2013). Rural area dwellers have been found to engage in primary economic activities that form the foundation for the country’s economic development (Abah, 2010).

Given the contributions of the rural sector to the national economy, enhancing the development of the sector should be central to government and public administration. This is necessary as such would further enhance the ability of the sector for increased contribution to the overall national growth and development. In most countries, development is most desirous in the rural areas where bulk of the population resides. The development of rural areas signals to a greater extent the level of national development and the situation of the nations in the development ladder.

Rural development has therefore been described in different ways by different authors, depending on the discipline or line of thought. This is because the approach to rural development is multidisciplinary. According to Aslam (1981) rural development is a process aimed at developing the rural poor, their economy and institutions from a state of stagnation or low productivity equilibrium into dynamic process leading to higher levels of living and better quality of life. Similarly, Schumacher (1983) defined rural development as developing the skill of the masses to make them self-reliant through instructions which supply appropriate and relevant knowledge on the methods of self-help. Rural development is a strategy which is designed to improve the economic and social life of a specific group of people, the rural poor.

It involves extending the developmental strides and benefits people who seek a livelihood in the rural areas such as small-scale farmers, tenants etc in order to improve their means of livelihood and mitigate the massive rural urban migration (Aliy, 1999). Rural-urban migration occurs at varying levels in every country. However, the challenges and prospects of rural development in Nigeria have been of great concern to the different tiers of government due to the rate of rural-urban migration.

Different motives account for rural urban migration amongst rural dwellers such as socio-cultural issues where people are forced to migrate to avoid numerous social problems at their place of origin (Agyemang, 2013), poor infrastructural development and lack of basic amenities, search for better economic opportunities such as jobs etc. Accessibility and ease of transportation and communication has also been noted to facilitate rural urban migration, this view is based on the extension of road networks from major towns to peripheral-urban and rural areas that resulted in the decrease in transportation cost and improved communication systems.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

Given the contributions of the rural sector to the national economy, enhancing the development of the sector should be priority to government and relevant stakeholders. This is necessary as such would further enhance the ability of the sector for increased contribution to the overall national growth and development. Unfortunately, over the years, the development strategies and efforts in Nigeria has been more urban based resulting in the relative neglect of rural areas as evidenced by the dearth of basic infrastructure in the rural areas such as good roads, well equipped and functional hospitals, electricity, pipe borne water etc (Abah, 2010).

Abonyi and Nnamani (2011) also noted that rural poverty persists in Nigeria despite the prosperity created by the country’s oil wealth as evidenced by the difficulty experienced in getting basic daily needs such as food, water and shelter. Lack of these basic life needs in the rural areas has made a number of rural dwellers migrate to urban centres with high hopes of improving their standard of living. According to Abah (2010), the deplorable condition of the Nigerian rural sector is emphatic and more worrisome is that even the few policies and programs put in place and implemented by government over the years have not resulted in significant improvement in the development of the rural areas in Nigeria (Ezeah, 2005).

Incessant and excessive rural urban migration has brought about a lot of socio-economic difficulties both in the rural and urban areas. McCarthy (2004), opined that ‘excessive urbanization leads to high rate of urban congestion, crime and poor infrastructure such as proper sewage disposal system, safe and portable drinking water, electricity and other amenities, chronic unemployment with the attendant creation of large slums and Shanty towns’. Many developing countries including Nigeria have made several attempts to resolve these problems of rural underdevelopment and desertion.

In Nigeria, from the Colonial period till date, successive administrations have tried to reform the rural areas where over 75% of Nigerians live in for the sake of attaining balanced growth and development, and discourage rural-urban migration, to no avail (Omonigho, 2013). According to Nwakeze (2004), the Nigerian population is growing at an annual rate of 2.8 percent that of the urban population is growing at 5.5 percent, it is pertinent to note that this rate is among the highest in the world today. This therefore calls for urgent measures to be taken towards fast tracking rural development to reduce urban population explosion.


1.3 Aim and Objectives

The general objective of this study is to determine the effect of rural development on rural urban migration. The specific objectives are;

  1. To determine whether rural development can serve as a panacea for rural urban migration
  2. To find out the socio-economic causes of rural urban migration
  3. To determine the implications of rural urban migration on rural development
  4. To identify measures put in place for rural development by government

1.4 Research Questions

  1. Can rural development serve as a panacea to rural urban migration?
  2. What are the socio-economic causes of rural urban migration?
  3. What are the consequences of rural urban migration on rural development?
  4. What measures are put in place by government to develop the rural areas?

1.5 Hypotheses

In order to enable the researcher assess the effect of rural development in combating rural urban migration in Nigeria, the following hypotheses will be tested:

  1. H0: Rural development does not have any influence on rural urban migration in Nigeria.
    H1: Rural development has an influence on rural urban migration in Nigeria
  2. H0: there is no implication of rural urban migration on rural development
    H2: there is implication of rural urban migration on rural development

1.6 Significance of the Study

This study will help beam the searchlight on rural development and its substantive effect in combating rural urban migration in Nigeria. The study seeks to find out the socio-economic and cultural causes of rural-urban migration in the study area and its implications on rural development with respect to the study area; this will help in highlighting strategies adopted by the community members to cope with the situation and what can be done to curb the situation.

This research study will also help reveal the extent of the problem to relevant stakeholders so that they can rise to the occasion and put in measures to develop the rural areas in order to reduce rural urban migration. Finally, this research work will add to the existing body of knowledge on the importance of rural development in combating rural urban migration in Nigeria


1.7 Scope and Limitation of the Study

This study will cover rural development and its impact on combating rural urban migration in Nigeria with special reference to the actual influence it has on the socio-economic activities and lives of rural dwellers, causes of rural-urban migration and measures put in place by relevant stakeholders to combat the menace of rural urban migration in the study area. The study will also cover all the rural areas and incidence of rural urban migration in Nigeria.
the studies there were some constrain which limited the scope o the study;

a) Availability of Research Material:

The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study

b) Time:

The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.

c) Organizational Privacy:

Limited Access to the selected auditing firm makes it difficult to get all the necessary and required information concerning the activities.


1.8 Definition of Terms

Rural area:

A geographical area located outside cities and towns with a relatively low population density and small settlements.

Migration:

Movement of people across a specified boundary for the purpose of establishing a new or semi-permanent residence.

Rural development:

The process of improving the quality of life and economic well being of people living in relatively isolated and

Rural urban migration:

Is a process of population shift from rural areas to urban areas with attendant increase in proportion of people living in urban areas.

Infrastructure:

Basic physical and organizational structures and facilities needed for the operation of a society or enterprise.


1.9 Organization of the Study

This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows

  1. Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), statement of problem, objectives of the study, research question, significance or the study, research methodology, definition of terms and historical background of the study.
  2. Chapter two highlight the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature.
  3. Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study.
  4. Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
  5. Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.

Chapter Five


Summary Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Introduction

It is important to ascertain that the objective of this study was to ascertain the effect of community mobilization for rural development in Nigeria.

In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing the challenges of community mobilization and community development in Nigeria.


5.2 Summary

Nigeria is blessed with natural as well as human resources that have not been properly channeled to ensure equitable distribution of wealth derived therefrom and ensure the overall development of the country as a whole. It has been shown that where the country is in the development ladder has been due to failure of successive governments since independence to succeed in the rural development efforts which has retarded the per capita income of the average Nigerian, thereby placing a large percentage of the populace below the poverty line. This inadequate mobilization of the natural and human resources can be eliminated with political will, commitment and continuity rather than unpredictability of rural development programmes and agencies. Since past governments have tried several development strategies without much success, integrated rural development approach should be given a deeper application


5.3 Conclusion

The results from this study has once again justified the capacity of community driven development (CDD) interventions to exclude rural dweller from poverty and get them included into the mainstream of economic and social development.Given the challenges of under-development in rural Nigeria, CSDP response is seen as an instrument and process of inclusion into the development process through engagement, empowerment and sharing of experience that must be evident in the attainment and sustenance of the variants of the social-well-being in an all-inclusive society that is not environmentally, institutionally, technologically, and humanly excluded.


5.4 Recommendations

Haven completed the study, the researcher therefore recommend that Since over 70% of Nigerian population live in the rural areas and produce the greatest wealth of the nation, the rural areas should be accorded more recognition in terms of budgetary provisions and provision of social and economic amenities. The production needs of rival dwellers centre around poor infrastructural facilities, inadequate extension services, and lack of financial credit.

Therefore feeder roads are urgently needed to effectively link and integrate peasants scattered all over the country with the urban centres to enable them to evacuate their products from the farms. They also need adequate water supply for drinking and irrigation, especially in the arid parts of the country.

Government should provide the inability environment to foster rural and community development in Nigeria. Facilities such as education, health services, electricity supply, improving literacy, health and general quality of life are acutely inadequate in the rural areas.

There is also need to adequately train the farmers in the use of new techniques of farming and for them to be provided with farming equipments like tractors, fertilizers and pest control chemicals at subsidized prices that those peasants can afford. In this regard, the current practice of absentee farmers living in the urban areas trading in fertilizers meant for real farmers should be stopped. Government should endeavour to deal directly with the real farmers in the rural areas if rural development is to be achieved.

The so-called “agricultural credit guarantee scheme’ under which commercial banks are encouraged to give peasant farmers loans guaranteed by the federal government through the Central Bank need to be reviewed. This is because the processes involved, including feasibility studies- required to secure those loans are beyond the capability of peasant farmers. The fact of the matter is that agricultural credit facilities in Nigeria have been designed for the big capitalist farmers. This policy should be reviewed to favour the peasant farmers who live in the rural areas.


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