Local Government And Rural Development In Nigeria: A Case Study Of Aninri Local Government Area In Enugu State

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Title page                                                                                  i

Approval page                                                                           ii

Dedication                                                                                iii

Acknowledgement                                                                     iv

Table of contents                                                                       v

List of table                                                                             




INTRODUCTION                                                                       1

1.1         Statement of Problem                                                      4

1.2         Objective of Study                                                           6

1.3         Significance of the Study                                                 7

1.4         Literature Review                                                            7

1.5         Theoretical Framework                                                    17

1.6         Hypothesis                                                                      21

1.7         Method of Research                                                         22



THE EVOLUTION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT IN NIGERIA                                                                                      27

2.1         Pre-Colonial Administration                                             27

2.2         Revenue Generation in Nigeria Local Government 39

2.3         The Ecology of Aninri Local Government Area         45




3.2         Significance of 1976 Local Government Reforms      58

3.3         Further Reform of 1991                                                   64



4.1        PRESENTATION OF DATA                                              70

4.2         Data Analysis                                                                           81

4.3         Constraints to Project Implementation in Aninri Local Government Area                                                        84



5.1        CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS             88

Bibliography                                                                    93

Questionnaire                                                                                     97



Table 1:       A table showing the % allocation of the Federal Revenue to the Tiers of Government in Nigeria (1979 – 1996)                                                                40

Table 2:       Local Government Share of the Federal Account Percentages                                             44

Table 3:       date Distribution and Collection                             72

Table 4:       Showing the Response on whether Aninri Local Government has helped in Mobilizing its citizens for community Projects in their Communities                                                           74

Table 5:       Showing the Response on Whether Government Agencies have helped in Terms of Encouragement                                                     75

Table 6:       Showing the distribution of the Respondents the way they perceived Effects of Finance of Project Implementation                                                77



Local government has existed in all countries of the world – though under different names such as local authority, local administration, county council and district administration etc., as an essential primary instrument for rural development. In Nigeria, its existence has taken different nature, character and names as there are different regions and periods. The inability of these local governments to meet the aims of its creation leads to the various reform of local government. In the reform, local government was constitutionally recognized as third tier level of government. Consequently, local government was given both statutory roles/responsibilities and revenue allocations from both the federal and state government. This stimulated the policies of development ethnicity of many additional local government areas. Aninri Local Government is one of such newly created local government with over 773 local governments created all over Nigeria. It should be expected that most of Nigeria’s rural communities would be developed or lifted up to at least semi cities. However, it has been observed that there exists an increasing trend of underdevelopment in the rural area. Thus, this work is determined to find out the extent Aninri Local Government Council have mobilized and sensitized people in the development of its areas. Secondly what factor(s) is responsible for the current level of development in the council area? It is our main objective to provide answer to the problems/question raised above. Thus, we embarked on review of related literature to discover the opinions and findings of scholars and researchers on these issues on these issues, with a view to fill any existing gap in the literature. To effectively achieve this aim we adopted David Easton’s system theory as our preferred tool of analysis. As a pattern of action and orientation, the systems theory focuses on the input, conversion and output mechanisms. The dynamism of this process shall enable us to determine the factors responsible for the identified problems. As the analysis and evaluation provided by this frame work that is, the system’s theory shall enable us test the following hypothesis:

1.     Aninri Local Government has not mobilized the rural populace in terms of development.

2.     Financial constraints has been a cog in the wheel of development strategies by Aninri Local Government Area.

In search for information and data, we adopted both the primary and secondary methods of data collection. In the primary source, 150 questionnaires were distributed local government officials, politicians’ religious organizations, traditional authorities and the masses within the ten political wards of Aninri Local Government Area. Simple percentage method was adopted for our calculations and inferences. On the secondary sources, we made reference to library text such as Books, Journals Periodicals, and Government publications.



It is never a gain saying the fact that rural development has become a national imperative in our country, Nigeria. A number of reasons can account for this. The first is the proportion of the National population resident in rural areas of Nigeria. In 1963 census, 80.7% of the national population were resident in rural areas; by 1985, this proportion has gone down to 70.13% and by 1990, it is expected to drop by 69% (OLisa, 1992).

Going by the views of Olisa, one can understand that a good proportion of the Nigerian populace is found in rural areas. The living standard of these people in the rural area is still at poverty level. Social amenities are inadequate or unavailable. Even if they are available, they are limited to the government functionaries who are serving in rural areas. It is to fight this object and total neglect,. Poverty, to mobilize and sensitize the local people for development necessitated that the new local government was established to critically cater for the need of the rural dwellers. Development of rural areas was one of the reasons for series of reform of local governments in Nigeria.

Olisa (1992) noted that “the history of local government in Nigeria portrays a sort of approach avoidance attitude on the part of Nigerian Governments. This exhibits the idea that the autonomy of local government as the third tier of government in Nigeria has been that of ambivalence. Since the British rule in Nigeria, attitude towards local government has been that of trial and reform. In 1976, the Murtala/Obasanjo regime took a giant stride and reformed local government system throughout the country. Out of nineteen states that were in existence, two hundred and ninety – nine local government were created.

In August 7th, 1991 (27), the government of General Ibrahim Babangida created thirty states plus Abuja  with five hundred and eight nine (589) local government areas. Sani Abacha also created new local government in 1997 which saw to the creation of Aninri Local government Area.

The aim of this local governments is to bring government to the grass root so that they will feel the impact and presence of government and at the same time mobilize the local populace for

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