IMPACT OF THE NATIONAL FADAMA DEVELOPMENT PROJECT PHASE (II) ON POVERTY REDUCTION AND FOOD SECURITY AMONG RICE FARMER BENEFICIARIES IN KOGI STATE, NIGERIA
The study was conducted to examine the impact of the National Fadama Development Project (II) (NFDP-II) on poverty reduction and food security among rice-farmer beneficiaries in Kogi State Nigeria. Four LGAs that participated in the Fadama (II) project and cultivated rice were selected through a multi stage sampling, two Fadama Community Associations (FCAs) were also randomly selected from the each of the four selected LGAs and two facilitators were selected from each of the LGAs selected. A total of one hundred and twenty (120) respondents (112 farmers and 8 facilitators) constituted the sample size for the study. A set of interview schedules and questionnaire were used to collect the data for the study. Descriptive statistics like frequency, percentage and mean score were used to analyze the data collected. Gross margin, Foster, Greer and Thorbecke (FGT) poverty model and food security model were used to determine farmers’ profitability, food security status and poverty level. Factor analysis with principal factor model with interation and varimax rotation was used to determine major constraints while t-test were used to pranalyze the impact of the project on farmers’ profitability and difference in respondents’ perception of problems encountered. The result of the study showed that the majority of the farmers (51.8%) and facilitators (75%) were males, the mean age of the farmers was 45.5 years while that of the facilitators was 38.5 years. The majority (57.1%) of the farmers have farming as their primary occupation. Information from fellow farmers was the most popular (96.4%) source of information on fadama project. Among some of the improved innovations on rice production introduced by the NFDP(II), only the rice farming inputs and field preparation/planting distance had above average adoption ratio with adoption index of 0.84 and 0.96 respectively. The gross margins of rice production before and after the project was significantly different with t-value of -14.94 at p < 0.05. The food security analysis of the farmers revealed that more (2.8%) of them were food insecure after the project. The project had positive impact on poverty reduction of the farmers. With respect to the perceived problems being encountered by the farmers in the project, poverty level of the farmers was perceived as the most serious (mean score = 3.89), while the facilitators perceived both high cost of farm inputs 8 and lack of credit facilities as the most serious problems (mean scores of 3.38 each). The results of the analysis further revealed that both farmers and facilitators share similar opinion on twenty identified problems and have significant differences in their perception on seven identified problems at p< 0.05. The result, however showed that several factors constrained the effectiveness of the NFDP (II) in the study areas. These factors were grouped into technical problems; institutional problems and economic problems. The most popular strategies suggested for effective performance of the project were provision of tractors for land preparation (65.2%) by farmers, proper implementation and completion of the programme plans as well as the supply of subsidised farm inputs and farmers’ training (87.5%) by the facilitators. In conclusion, the study provided evidence of the effectiveness of Community Driven Development approach on food security and poverty reduction. It is therefore recommended that, to improve the overall performance of the programme, the programme staff at all levels should ensure that the programme implementation plans, (various local development plans (LDPs)) are followed religiously and the programme projects are completed.