TRENDS IN THE ACTIVITIES OF THE MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT ANAMBRA STATE, NIGERIA, 1991-2013

TRENDS IN THE ACTIVITIES OF THE MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT ANAMBRA STATE, NIGERIA, 1991-2013

ABSTRACT

This study evaluated the impact of the extension services of Green River Project (GRP) on fish farmers in Niger Delta, Nigeria. Specifically, it sought to ascertain fishery technologies received by GRP fish farmers; determine adoption of fish farming technologies by fish farmers; determine impact of extension services of GRP on socioeconomic condition of the fish farmers as at the year 2012; ascertain farmers’ perceived constraints to adoption of GRP fish farming technologies; ascertain constraints to effective performance of extension services of GRP and determine perceived strategies to improve effectiveness of the extension services of GRP. The study was carried out in Niger Delta, Nigeria. Multi-stage sampling technique was used to select 120 fish farmers and 20 GRP personnel. Data were collected through the use of questionnaire and interview schedule. Descriptive statistics (frequency, mean statistic, percentage) were used to present data while t-test, regression, chi-square and factor analysis with varimax rotation were used to analyze the data. Mean age of GRP fish farmers and personnel were 50 and 41.70 years, respectively. Majority (76.7% of fish farmers and 65% of GRP personnel) of respondents were male. Also majority (77.5%) of the fish farmers and all (100%) the GRP personnel were married. The respondents were literates. Majority (70.0) of the fish farmers also engaged in other income generating activities. Average household size of the fish farmers and GRP personnel were 6.0 and 4.0 persons, respectively. Average years of participation in GRP for the fish farmers was 8.00 years while the mean years of working with GRP of the personnel was 12.65years. The farmers’ average number of contact with GRP was 4.0 times per month. GRP personnel used different types of teaching methods such as the use of contact group (100%), T&V system (90%) and SPAT (85.0%). Majority (86.7%)r of the fish farmers belonged to social organisations. Majority of respondents received most of the technologies disseminated. Adoption index of fish farm management technologies, feeding techniques, fish culture management technique, water quantity and quality management techniques and liming techniques were 0.79, 0.77, 0.77, 0.88 and 0.52 respectively. Extension services of GRP had impact on quantity of fingerlings stocked (t=6.398; p≤ 0.05) and quantity of fishes harvested (t=6.279; p≤ 0.05); income from fishes produced (t=7.390; p≤ 0.05) among others. Constraints to adoption of GRP technologies were grouped into technology dissemination constraints; project implementation and sustainability constraints among others. Some socioeconomic characteristics of the respondents (age (years), years spent in formal education and years of participation in GRP) influenced the adoption of the fish farming technologies. Therefore, the null hypothesis was rejected for these variables. There was significant difference between the average quantities of fish stocked and average quantity of fish harvested by the fish farmers in Imo and Rivers States after participation in GRP hence the null hypothesis was rejected. The null hypothesis was rejected while the alternative hypothesis was accepted. It further revealed that there was no significant difference between the average income earned by the fish farmers in Imo and Rivers States after participation in GRP and the null hypothesis was accepted. Implementation constraints to effective performance of extension services of GRP according to GRP personnel included: climatic uncertainties and flooding (M= 1.55) and delay in input supply (M=1.20). It was recommended that there is need to increase youth involvement in the project (90.0%), increase farmers’ participation in decision making (90.0%) and increase the number of trained extension personnel (85.0%).