Leadership And The Challenges Of Development

Project and Seminar Material for Political Science

Leadership And The Challenges Of Development


This study is on leadership and the challenges of development. The total population for the study is 200 residents in makurdi, Benue state. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made up married men,married women, civil servants and youths were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies

Chapter One


1.1 Background to the Study

The socio-economic and political development of any country depends largely on the ability of its leadership to facilitate, entrench and sustain good governance (Afigbo, 2007). However, when there is a culture of impunity in any society and there is a wide spread of lack of leadership by example to enthrone transparent and qualitative public bureaucracy, a degenerated symptoms of underdevelopment continues to manifest as exemplified particularly in Benue State and Nigeria at large public administration (Onigbide, 2007).

The manifestation of symptoms of underdevelopment does not imply that Benue as a state or Nigeria as a country lacks quality and competent human resources to engender development, but the process of enthroning leaders is bedeviled with crisis and it does not provide room for morally upright, competent, visionary leaders to emerge. In this context, Imhonopi and Ugochukwu (2013) vehemently assert that Nigeria is richly endowed by providence with human and material resources critical for national development and advancement. However, since gaining political independence, Nigeria has continued to meander the path befitting failed, weak and “juvenile” states.

A state that had very great prospects at independence and was touted to lead Africa out of the backwoods of underdevelopment and economic dependency, Nigeria is still stuck in the league of very poor, corrupt, underdeveloped, infrastructurally decaying, crisis riven, morally bankrupt and leadership-deficient countries of the South. Rather than become an exemplar for transformational leadership, modern bureaucracy, national development, national integration and innovation, Nigeria seems to be infamous for whatever is mediocre, corrupt, insanely violent and morally untoward.

According to the Worldwide Governance Indicators (WGI), “Good governance is the process and institutions by which authority in a country is exercised; the process by which governments are selected, held accountable, monitored and replaced; the capacity of governments to manage resources efficiently, and to formulate, implement and enforce sound policies and regulations; and, the respect for the institutions that govern economic and social interactions among them” (Onigbide, 2007). It also includes both a broad strategy and a particular set of initiatives to strengthen the institutions of civil society with the objective of making government more accountable, more open and transparent and more democratic (Minogue cited in Abe, 2010).

History has shown that no nation in the wide world grew and enjoyed steady development in almost all spheres of its national life without experiencing good and selfless political leadership (Ogbeidi, 2012). This is mainly because qualitative growth and development has constantly been a product of good leadership. Therefore, the undertaking of this study will investigate the relationship between Leadership and the challenges of development in Benue State from 1999-2015.

1.2 Statement of Problem

The frequent cases of bribery, corruption, frauds or embezzlement of funds coupled with other social ills such as nepotism, tribalism and the like are highly worrisome in Benue State. These vices are very rampant and seem to portray that leadership has been myopic and unfruitful on the whole. So far, there seem to be no end in sight in the scheme of things going by the wide-spread poverty, hunger, sickness, unemployment and lack of social cum economic amenities that plaque Benue State.

The problem of leadership and its pervasive bearing on social cum economic development inBenue State and Nigeria is multifaceted. Now, the root cause of underdevelopment in Nigerian problem is attributed to bad leadership. There is nothing basically wrong with the Nigerian character. There is nothing wrong with the Nigerian land, climate, water, air, or anything else. The Nigerian problem is the unwillingness or inability of its leaders to rise to their responsibility, to the challenge of personal example, which is the hallmark of true leadership.

Political analysts, policy watchers and developmental researchers indicate that Nigeria is fraught of poor leadership, corruption and weak bureaucratic institutions. It is an axiom that since attainment of political independent, Nigeria has never been governed by selfless, truly transformational and intellectually endowed leaders. That is, Nigeria has never selected its best sons to positions of leadership and mediocre leadership can only lead to mediocre government without any meaningful development. It is against this backdrop that this research study seeks to explore the relationship between leadership and the challenges of development in Benue State from 1999-2015 with a special reference to Makurdi Local Government Area.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The major objective of this study is to examine the effect leadership on development in Benue State from 1999-2015. Other specific objectives are:

  1. To examine the relationship between leadership and development crisis in Benue State.
  2. To investigate the effect of leadership on socio-economic development in Nigeria.
  3. To determine the effect of leadership style on grass-root development in Benue State.

1.4 Research Hypotheses

For the successful completion of the study, the following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher;

H0: there is no relationship between leadership and development crisis in Benue State

H1: there is relationship between leadership and development crisis in Benue State

1.5 Significance of the Study

Benue State is among the states in Nigeria endowed with natural and valuable resources that are capable of improving socio-economic status and living standards of the people.

It conceptual, theoretical and empirical studies will be a furtherance of understanding of salient issues in the parlance of leadership and developmental challenges in Benue State.

The outcomes of the study will also serve as a useful tool for students of the Benue State University, who would want to carry out further research in this domain.

Finally, the outcomes of the investigation would be significant to policy makers and implementers at large, as they would find the result and policy recommendations of this study as a call to action.

1.6 Scope and Limitation of the Study

The scope of the study is the research boundary of the study. The scope of the study concerns the thrust of Leadership and Development Crisis in Benue State having Makurdi Local Government Area of the State as its study area. The researcher encounters some constrain which limited the scope of 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.

1.7 Definition Of Concepts

The following are the operational definition of key terminologies used in the study;


Refers to the behavioural pattern which the recognized leader of the group brings to bear on the members for the accomplishment of the corporate objective through encouragement, open decision making process, persuasion, influence, identification with group or otherwise (Ezirim, 2010).

Leadership Style:

This can be defined as the general approach or principle adopted by the governing class.


It is the qualitative and qualities, self-improvement of man that applies to whole societies and people. It means the removal of obstacles to the progressive or qualitative transformation of man and such obstacles include hunger, poverty, ignorance, disease, mal-nutrition, unemployment, to mention but a few.


This refers to a state of one being unable to meet the basic needs (health care, shelter, food, clothing, etc) of life. It is a state of lack.


This is said to be the unlawful use of government fund for the purpose of enrichment of self-interests.


This can be describe as social amenities such as good roads, houses, bridges, hospitals, schools, electricity.

1.8 Organization of the Study

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

  • Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study.
  • Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature.
  • Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study.
  • Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
  • 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 leadership and the challenges of development

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 leadership and the challenges of development

5.2 Summary

This study was on leadership and the challenges of development. Three objectives were raised which included: To examine the relationship between leadership and development crisis in Benue State, to investigate the effect of leadership on socio-economic development in Nigeria, to determine the effect of leadership style on grass-root development in Benue State. In line with these objectives, two research hypotheses were formulated and two null hypotheses were posited. The total population for the study is 200 residents in makurdi, Benue state. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made up married men, married women, civil servants and youths were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies

5.3 Conclusion

Managerial leadership poses a host of challenges. They come in three categories: external (from people and situations); internal (from within the leader herself); and stemming from the circumstance of being a leader. They often arise in periods of instability or change, such when a program or period of work is beginning or ending, or when a group or organization is in transition. Some are concrete and limited dealing with a particular situation, for instance but many are more abstract and ongoing, such as keeping your group focused on its vision over the long term. For each category of challenge, there are strategies that can help leaders cope.

5.4 Recommendation

Recognizing and understanding the importance of managerial leadership means: understanding people, visionary, problem solving, creativity and the ability to motivate the followership towards the shared vision. Undertaking this work requires four key qualities in managerial leaders: Providing purpose, direction and meaning; Building trust; providing optimism; and Focus on action and results. To cope effectively with new challenges, leadership has to imbibe the culture of continuous Learning and continuous training and retraining of the labor force so that the response and adaptive tools may remain constantly sharpened. V. (1991) posits „‟ that in general leaders should try to be pleasant, accommodating, honest, truthful but most of all try to please the greatest number of people who works for you. Managerial leadership can be a hard and lonely road, or an exciting and collaborative trip to a new place. The more, and more useful, strategies you can find to cope with its challenges, the better managerial leader you’ll be

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