MILLENNIUM DEVELOPMENT GOALS (MDGS) AND RURAL POVERTY ALLEVIATION IN ENUGU STATE (2008-2015)
Globally, prominent among the current greatest threats to human existence, are poverty and hunger. In fact, to state that the scourge of poverty has assumed the dimension of a global epidemic, is a repetition of the obvious. We have a situation where a greater of the world population lives below one dollar a day or can hardly afford a meal. In the third world countries, of which Nigeria is one, the situation remains pathetic and pitiable. Subsequently, the 189 United Nation member-States gathered in September 2000 and adopted the Millennium Declaration; a significant step towards promoting global development and indeed rural development by the year 2015. The Millennium Declaration encapsulates eight (8) concrete commitments and their targets called the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). In view of the formal end of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the adoption of sustainable development goals (SDGs) at the UN summit held from September 25-27, 2015, at UN Headquaters, this research work sought to examine a key area of rural development; rural poverty alleviation. In this vein, this project report MDGs and Rural Poverty Alleviation in Enugu State (2008-2015), had as its general objective to examine the impact of the millennium development goals in the attainment of rural poverty alleviation in Enugu State, while specifically, its objectives include; to examine the impacts of the MDGs programmes on poverty alleviation in rural areas in Enugu State, to examine how corruption has affected the realization of MDGs poverty alleviation programmes in rural areas of Enugu State and to examine how MDGs rural poverty alleviation programmes have been achieved in Enugu State through community participation. To accomplish this task, the research adopted the descriptive survey research design and employed both the primary and secondary data to arrive at its findings rand conclusion. The researcher also utilized frequency tables, simple percentage and bar charts in presenting and analyzing the data generated. Three research hypotheses were formulated and tested with the Chi-Square statistical test. The Chi-square and interview results, and government data relating to each of the hypotheses were analyzed and the findings and conclusions were drawn under each of the hypotheses. Subsequent to the analysis, the research found that the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have positively impacted on the life of rural dwellers in Enugu State, especially through the conditional grant scheme (CGS) and the conditional cash transfer (CCT). That community participation has significantly contributed in the realization of rural poverty alleviation. That corruption, poor funding and implementation had limited the impact of the MDGs programmes. The research recommended increased funding from the Federal government, appointment of qualified people in the implementation committee and synergy with anti-corruption agencies to fight corruption, as a way of optimizing the benefits of the MDGs rural poverty alleviation. The research concluded that the MDGs poverty alleviation and developmental programmes are laudable, and deserve maximum support from both the government and the governed, so that the benefits could maximally extend to all and sundry.