The Socio-Economic Impact Of Rural-Urban Migration On The Rural Areas

Project and Seminar Material for Economics

The Socio-Economic Impact Of Rural-Urban Migration On The Rural Areas


A lot has been said about the rising of rural urban migration in recent years. This phenomenon has attracted the concern of economists, the government both at the federal and state levels because of its attendant’s problems such problems associated with rural-urban migration on the rural areas include decline in agricultural production, migration decline, rural poverty, rural depopulation, demographic consequences etc. it is against this background that the researcher has made conscious effor56t to examine the socio-economic impact of the rural urban migration on ora village. The study has carried out using 100 questionnaires administered to the indigenes of that village, and moreover 10 indigenes were interviewed personally. The analysis of the data shows that many reasons are responsible for the rural urban migration in ora village. Prominent among these reasons is the issues of lack of employment opportunities. As a result of the above, it is recommended that an integrated rural development planning should be vigorously pursued by the government. If all the recommendations were to be adopted by the government, it will minimize the mass movement of rural dwellers to urban cities.

Chapter One


1.1 Background to the Study

There have been rapid increase of youths movements from rural area to urban centres, no one is in doubt today of the fact the rate at which people (especially, the youths) move from rural area to urban centres is affecting the lives of the rural dwellers. Nigeria is a developing country; in fact, she is at the threshold of being a developed nation. On this note it is wise to be acquainted with the meaning of the world “migration”.

Migration according to Udo (1980) defined migration as the permanent or semi-permanent change in residence from one administrative unit (district, country, province, state or country) to another. And it is usually considered to be an economic man’s reaction to socio-economic differentials between regions. Migration has become an important factor influencing population dynamics in a geographical area. Fertility and mortality determines the rate of natural population increase in any locality. The overall size of the population such an area depend on the pattern of migration. Population movements are often responsible for observable sudden changes in population size in many locality. It is however, pertinent to note that migration is an instrument to the solution of many social and economic problems. As a socio-economic act, migration may not be of interest in itself other than in the result of its effect, but it does often gives rise to problems as well as providing solutions.

My people from rural area have been moving to urban centres. Rural urban has attracted many people simply because of white collar jobs, education, change of environment, climate or whether condition etc. the rural urban migration in ora clan can be seen as a spontaneous human effort to achieve balance between population and resources. It is natural phenomenon which produces demographic social and economic interaction that reduces some of the irregularities of nature i.e. people wants to move from a place where there are no socio amenities (rural), to where there are socio amenities (cities). According to Lawai (1983). The implications of this movement is that while most of our urban centres suffers from over population of people and activities, rural areas are often under populated. There are two factors responsible for this movement from rural area to urban centres. These are the “push” and the “pull” factors.

Push factors: This factor causes the forwards movement of people from rural to urban centres. While the pull factor, it directed or draw people towards itself e.g. education, white collar job and among others. The most affected people in this rural urban migration are the educated youths who are unable to obtain a suitable job in a rural area.

Rural-urban migration has a dual impact on the individual as well as the community either directly or indirectly. It is through the contribution of successful migrants that most important projects in ora clan have been made possible. This fact can be buttressed by the financial support given to gigantic project like the building of community school and village town hall in ora. It is against this introductory background of the study that the researcher has intended to examine how rural-urban migration has affected the socio-economic development of rural settlement with particular reference to oral clan in Owan West Local Government Area of Edo State.

1.2 Statement of Problems

Since 1960 there has been massive movement of people from rural areas to urban centres. This project was meant to find out the socio-economic impacts of rural-urban migration. Prothero (1965) recognizes four of rural urban migration which are the daily movement, seasonal migration, short-term or periodic movements, definitive or long term movements.

Rural-Urban Migration has become too rampant on the rural areas especially the study area (ora clan), in Owan West Local Government Area of Edo State. And they migrate without considering the socio-economic impact of this movement on their parents and the community in general.

Perhaps this movement may be as a result of lack of social amenities in the rural areas, searching for white collar jobs, for education purposes, climate condition among others. This is what the researcher will find out in this project. But finance and time has been the major constraints to the realization of this research work.

1.3 Objective of the Study

In view of the above stated problems, the study therefore seeks to:

  1. Identify the causes of migration from ora village to urban centres and enumerate the rationale behind such movements.
  2. Examine the negative and positive of socio-economic impacts of rural urban migration.
  3. Suggest possible remedies to check such influx of people from rural areas to urban centres form sound national planning and developmental purpose.

1.4 Research Questions

Since research preposition are meant to test the validity of assumption, the following questions are stated for the purpose of this study.

  1. Why rural urban migration has greater influence on the life of rural dwellers.
  2. Did rural-urban migration occurs because of lack of employment opportunities in the rural areas
  3. Why did the rural-urban dwellers migrate to urban centres?
  4. What is the socio-economic impact of migrating from rural area to urban centres?

1.5 Significance of the Study

  1. The study when successfully completed will be of value to the educational planners.
  2. The study will be of importance to researchers/students working on related topics.
  3. The study will reveal the reasons why people migrate from rural area to urban centres.
  4. The study will also be an addition to previous work on the topic. Thus, an addition to knowledge.

1.6 Definition of Terms


This means the movement of people from one place to another. Teriba (1982) sees migration as the movement of people from one civil division to another.


This is a place where people live.


It is the movement of people out of a country.


This is the movement of people into country.

Net migration:

The difference between the number of immigration and emigrants.


These are people that move into a country.


These are people that engage in the movement out of a country.

1.7 Limitation of the Study

The central aim of the study is to investigate the effect of rural-urban migrants in Ora rural area. In doing so, attempts have been made to address the issues based primarily on perspectives of migrants and their destination. But, in addressing the issue, this study focuses only in the assessment socio-economic and demographic effects of rural-urban migration in their destination and not origin of migrants. It also lacks to reveal economic impact of high influx of youths from rural areas.

1.8 Methodology of the Study

The study will assess both primary and secondary data. Using more than one data collection approach give opportunity to the researcher to combine the strengths and correct some of the deficiencies of any one source of data. Primarily questionnaire which includes open-ended and closed ended would distributed for both migrants and for non-migrant local residents of the rural area. In-depth interview would also conduct to substantiate the responses acquired through questionnaires. Their responses were interpreted and analyzed using descriptive statistics. In addition to this, published and unpublished literatures were used.

Chapter Five

Summary of Findings, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Summary of Findings

Rural-urban migration is caused because of different push factors in the area of origin and different pull factors in the urban areas. Lack of arable land because of over population and investment in the area of origin is the main cause for high influx of youths from rural area to urban centers.

The study reveals that most migrants are; young between15-20 years old, with primary cycle of education grade (1-4) and they were unmarried. It also identifies that university and college graduates are also among the migrants because of unemployment in their area of origin.

Socio-economic effect of rural-urban migrants can be seen from different perspectives; the findings are categorized into four different parts, these are: effect on socio-economic condition of the rural area, effect on socio-economic life of urban households, effect on demography and physical environment of the rural area.

In this research it is found that, rural-urban migration increases the urban population and hence unplanned urban expansion with insufficient supply of social services like health care proper sewerage system, road networks and transportation system. The inadequacies of social services were highly signaled on transport and health care services. Because of high influx of migrants in to the rural area, transportation and health services become inaccessible.

Regarding effect of rural-urban migration on urban households, it is a cause for urban poverty, unemployment and expansion of crime in the rural area. The effect of rural-urban migration on urban demography also indicate that, problems face urban people are caused by the rapid population growth, and this rapid increase in population size is highly aggravated by rural-urban migration.

The study also found that, rural-urban migration contributes to the growth of urban squatters and unplanned expansion of towns and cities, with improper environmental management. It infer that rural-urban migration contribute for environmental pollution in the urban areas.

5.2 Conclusion

This research has presented the socio-economic effects of rural-urban migration on social and economy of urban households taking the case study done in Ora rural area. Rural-urban migration puts pressure on urban basic facilities like health service, transportation and housing services. Rural-urban migrants engaged on street informal business that severely affect livelihood of non-migrant urban residents.

High flow of migrants to Ora rural area creates excessive labor and this has accentuated the problem of unemployment. In growing number of street children, growing rate of the commercial sex workers, growing rate of crime and expansion urban informal sectors are the major problems that have resulted from rural-urban migration.

Migration also affects urban dwellers by making food items prices to raise, competition for employment which results work for low payment. Migration has significant influence on the population size of cities. The flood of rural migrants to the city results unplanned rise of population and demand of jobs, health, transportation, and the like urban facilities. Besides, as more and more rural-urban migrants move into this city, there will be soon a point of diminishing returns where the towns will become unable to provide even basic social services to the registered residents due to increased migrants‟ pressure.

Furthermore, rural-urban migrants are polluting the cities, as they defecate in public because they have rented rooms without any services except for sleeping. In most part of Owan west L.G.A. some migrants perform all activities required for human survival with no concern to the environment of the city.

5.3 Recommendation

In the poverty reduction strategy paper of the country, rural -urban migration is considered as undesirable incidence. However, rural-urban migration can be a desirable phenomenon and should be part and parcel of the poverty reduction strategy. The strategy should be designed in the ways of maximizing the benefits of migration and minimizing the negative outcomes.

Vocational training should be given for rural-urban migrants to equip them with the necessary skills and make them competitive in the non-farm labor market. Similarly, favorable conditions should be created to enable migrants transfer their skill gained from commercial farms and industries to their rural origin.

Rural-urban migration facilitates the linkages between agriculture and industrial development particularly in re-allocation of labor from less productive sectors to more productive sectors. Rural-urban migration is a means of structural transformation leading to economic growth. In this regard, the good performance of the urban economy and the expansion of labor intensive industries facilitate the rural-urban linkages. Therefore, urban and rural development policies should be consistent and complementary to each other. In addition, migration policies should be entrenched in the macro-economic policy of the country.

Land is an important asset for the rural population. Land fragmentation as a result of population growth is one of the challenges of rural households forcing rural youths to migrate, particularly in densest populated districts of the country such as Edo. The growth of labor force is too high as compared to the growth of available resources and employment opportunities. Thus, population and land use policies should be revised regularly in the way that incorporates whole section of the society.

The government and private sector should create employment opportunities in the rural and urban economies to reduce the level of open and disguised unemployment as well as chronic poverty of rural regions. In this regard, the government should create conducive business environment and infrastructure for the private sector in rural areas and employment opportunity for rural youths should be secured.

Small-scale farming is unable to feed the increasing population. In addition, the sector is affected by natural calamities and recurrent droughts and forcing rural youths to migrate. Therefore, modern technologies, mechanized farming and irrigated agriculture should be introduced in considerable extent with incorporation of rural youths.
Education strategy should incorporate agricultural components to equip raising rural youths with adequate skill to engage in agricultural sectors. As many rural youths engage in agricultural activities, rural-urban migration lessened significantly and increment of agricultural production results stability of cost of consumers goods in the towns and cities.

Edo becomes melting pot with a lot of rural-urban migrants coming from different part of the country. Therefore, decentralized urban development in regional states should be applied to absorb raising rural-urban migrants. On other way, it reduces high influx of migrants to Ora and enables rural youths to employ in their localities.

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