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ANALYSIS OF DEVELOPMENT CAPABILITIES OF THE NIGERIAN LOCAL GOVERNMENT SYSTEM (A CASE STUDY OF IDEMILI NORTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA).
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The local government, which is the third tier of government, has variously defined by many people.
Golding in his book local government defined it simply as the management of their own affairs by the people of a locality.
Akpan offered a more comprehensive definition when he wrote that local government entails the breaking down of country in to small units or localities for the purpose of administration, in which the inhabitants of the different units of localities concerned play a direct and full part through their selected representatives who exercise power or undertake function under the general authority of the national government.
We accept this latter definition since the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria endorse the functions assigned to local government by various state edicts and guarantees democratically elected state.
The system of local government by democratically local government councils is under the constitution guarantees and accordingly, the government of every state shall ensure their existence under a law which provides for the establishment structure composition, finance and function of such councils.
Prior to the federal military government local reform in 1976, the structure of one state to another quite remarkable changes have been made to the main features of our local government system since 1987. The reforms of the last five 95) years have greatly transformed the native of inter government relations, especially the relationship between state and local government, and the internal management organization of local government.
While most of the reforms had positive impact on local government administration a few have had the opposite effect even if they were well intentioned. The government also has had to reverse itself on the key reforms under the transition to civil programme.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEMS
The local government reform of paved way for local government to be able to obtain their necessary goals and objectives but therefore lack uniformity in local government administration prior to the 1976 re-organization.
The closed door recruitment of indigenous employees of the native authorities based largely on nepotism and patronage meant that only those favoured or related to the elites could be employed. It upon every one that there were few people with adequate ability to fill responsible position in local government and that there was no establishment code of personnel administration used by local government. The use of “Son of the Soil” patronage and nepotism as standards of recruitment, could not be said to constitute foundations of a rational system of personal management in a public jurisdiction, poor condition of service which neither attracted nor retained labour to the non existence of clearly delineated function for the local government to constantly encode the power of the former.
The new local government reform is geared towards correcting the above economics and is hope to create favourable opportunities for development.
This research will focus its attention on how effective local government reform now is ensuring an even and accelerated development” given the provision contained in the 1976 reform for strengthen and improving the performance.
Since 1950 to 1975, local government reforms and whole question of directorate of food, road and rural infrastructure are deigned to find solution to the problems of amenities to the masses at the rural area. To this end, it has become necessary to forget a relationship between the local government and the communities with an aim at meting the needs of the masses at various community level.
The development capabilities of the Nigeria local government aim towards stressing the revenue at which the local community obtain their necessary needs exercises, could encourage equal political social and economic development there by raising and improving the standard of living of this subsistence population.
But these objectives have not been accomplished because in the rural area today the rural population is yet to do accorded any serious consideration on the proposal of social security, education, health and socio recognition
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
I have been primarily motivated to embark on the work because as big as Idemili local government is both in terms of human and materials resources, we have not found any comprehensive research work devoured primarily to analyzing the development carried out in the area via the local government either directly or indirectly by motivating and encouraging the people as well as look into the factor that constitute impediment to a more rapid development of the are after the local government reform of 1976.
The aim of this project work is therefore to cover a research gap that has existed over these years.
We hope that based on the analysis of the development capabilities the government may be in military government in 1976 and other reforms. The fact that the ultimate measure of the effectiveness of any government local or national is its ability to improve the lot of the people to whom it is responsible.
The local government reform has not remarkably helped in the development of the rural areas ie in improving the general welfare of the governed.
We attribute this to:
1. Low motivation, lack of competence and questionable integrity of the employees of local government.
2. Inadequate finance at the disposal of the local government for carrying out development programmes arising from the paucity of the amount accruing to local government intervention in local government revenue.
Position to take a second look at the reform and thus determine whether to retain the reform as it presenting is, to amend al or art of it or even to totally discard the continue the research for more effective instrument of bringing development down to the rural areas.
1.4 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This work or research covers the area known as Idemili North local government area. Consequently, this research analysis the development capabilities of what to day stands as Idemili North local government that functioned for a reasonable length of time under the new local government reform.
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
The task in this work is to evaluate the role of local government in development given far reaching reforms carried out on local government by the federal.
1.6 RESEARCH QUESTION
1. What is really the reason why local government areas were neglected from development?
2. Why is the federal government always reject give assistance to local government when they needed?
1.7 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The objective f this study as have been stated earlier is to analyses the development capabilities of the Nigeria.
Local government in the country that is to take an in depth look into the development potentials inherent in the country as well as asses how far local government have actualized these potentials by looking at their performance levels of Idemili North local government as our case study.
This is because we believe that the local government seems typically of all local government in Anambra state.
Basically, our framework for analysis will be the system approach, which has been defined in various ways.
We shall use the structural model of Gabriel Almon, which we developed as a method of analysis following the impact of the general system theory.
Structure refers to those arrangements within the system, which perform the functions and a function generally defined as the objective consequences of a pattern of action for the system in which it occurs.
1.8 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
There is some limitation that militated against the researcher during the course of writing this research project.
This project is supposed to cover a lot of local government in Anambra but because of financial constraint, the study is limited to some specific area.
The researcher also aware that some respondents may have been resistant to disclose the true picture for reasons best known to them while some conceal or even pointed thing too good or too bad for the research work.
1.9 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Development: The term development embarks an overall social process which is dependent upon the outcome of ma’s efforts to deal with his natural environment. Richard Poston sees development as a process of self-discovery by which the people of a community learn to identify and solve their communal problem.
Federal Republic of Nigeria, The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1979.
Myrdal G. (1955) Local Government London English University Press P.9
Rodney W. (1972) How Europe Under Development Africa, London, Bog L.L Overture Publication, P 10
Young O. (1968) System of Political Science New Jersey Prensi Hall Inc, P.29.
The Ash ridge Conference on Social Development. (1954) Zolonial Office Miscellaneous No.523.