ASSESSING THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT’S COMMUNICATION CAMPAIGN ON CASSAVA TRANSFORMATION AT THE NATIONAL ROOT CROPS RESEARCH INSTITUTE, UMUDIKE, ABIA STATE.
The study assessed the communication campaign programs of the federal government’s cassava transformation initiatives as carried out by the National Root Crops Research Institute, Umudike, Abia State. The survey research method using questionnaire and interview was used to obtain data from the respondents. The research work was highly descriptive and inferential in nature. This involved the use of tables and sample percentages as basic descriptive statistical technique employed to analyze the raw data which was obtained from primary sources. The raw data was subsequently subjected to chi-square test and one sample t-Test as major tool for hypotheses testing. The alternate hypotheses of the four hypotheses were all accepted. Findings reveal that, radio, manuals, bulletins, word of mouth, press releases, newsletters, newspapers, news/magazines, special events and television are some of the campaign programs employed by the National Root Crops Research Institute, Umudike, in the cassava transformation campaign of the federal government. Other campaign strategies employed by the institute during the cassava transformation campaign include: the audience participation model, the 5ps of social marketing. It was concluded that adequate, effective/efficient campaign programs, via the right media and methods of communication, backed up by adequate funding enhance social change and elicit positive responses from the citizens, especially the Nigerian farmers toward appreciating the governmental programs. It was therefore recommended that, in planning any campaign program by either the public or private organizations, aimed at positive change or positive response from the citizens, adequate, effective/efficient campaign programs, such as public relations information, education and communication programs; advertising; face to face contact; publicity; etc must be executed, and this should be done via the right media (print, electronic and created media) and methods (TV announcements and Jingles, radio announcements and jingles, posters, fliers, banners, mobile cinemas, mobile announcements, church announcements, Age-grades, town unions, schools announcements, women associations, traditional rulers, town criers, e.t.c.) and ensuring that adequate funds are provided to back-up the campaign programs, as this is a guaranteed way of achieving the set goals and objectives of the cassava transformation initiatives of the federal government.