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1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
Agricultural extension has often been conceptualized as an education process, which promotes learning it uses the combined findings of biological sciences and the principles of social science to bring about changes in knowledge, skill attitude and practices in and out of school setting (Ileubaoje 2004). Eremie (2005) postulated that an agricultural extension services has a lot play in ensuring that Nigeria achieves the million development goals. It was these perceived important roles of agricultural extension that informed the establishment of the agricultural development programme (ADPs). With the re-organization and strengthening of the extension agent of the ADPS, along training and visits line in 2006, a number of activities were initiated so as to ensure that the seven features of the trainings and visits are implemented. These have led to a change in the roles performed by the extension workers thereby resulting in some level of satisfaction among both extension workers and their clients (Ajuwon 2006). It is also worth noting that despite the tremendous achievements of the agricultural sector in Nigeria, the ADPs have been besotted by a myriad of problems, especially with the terminal end of the counterpart funding by the World Bank. These problems range from the Nona rail ability of facilities necessary for effective implementation and functioning of extension workers to poorly motivated staff resulting in low morale, low level of role perception and poor performance of extension workers (Banmeke and Ajayi 2005) Chikwendu et al, (2007) noted that in recent years, there have been indications of ineffectiveness in the extension agent of the ADPs. The goal of every manager is to increase production and efficiency to obtain maximum result for the organization motivation for better performance depends on job satisfaction, achievement, recognition and professional growth (Adeniyi, 2001). The rural area is the predominant food and fibre producing sector of the Nigeria society and all natural resources which constitute the wealth of a nation are obtained of the rural areas. The importance of the rural in Nigeria also his in the mere fact that over 70% of the people live and derive their livelihood from there. The state of the rural areas in Nigeria’s is determined by a combination of methods which include available social, physical and institutional infrastructures as well as the people’s level of living including their levels of perceived deprivation and satisfaction with current level of living. The rural areas in Nigeria is characterized by lack of public infrastructure, sub-standard education, poor health services and low agricultural productivity leading to poor standard of living for the majority. The agricultural extension agent in recent years has however played a significant role in improving agricultural production in Nigeria through advisory agent and adequate access to information on improved techniques of production agricultural extension plays a pivotal role in ensuring the awareness and subsequent adoption of the contemporary methods of agricultural management various extension teaching methods have been employed to make sure that the technologies get to the end users prominent among there is the training and visit system of the agricultural development programme. The central principle or idea of the extension strategy is to produce competent and well- informed extension agents who will frequently and regularly visit farmers with relevant technical messages and bring farmers problems to research. The system of extension entails that each extension agent is required to regularly visit the farmers/farmer’s group with relevant messages that are specific to the farm practices taking place in the field at that point in time. Feed back is also taken by the extension agents from farmers to the research station. The extension agent operates from the back drop belief that increased agricultural productivity depends primarily upon acceptance of improved cultural and technological change at the rural farm level and that peasant farmers can achieve improved production only if they adopt recommended to agricultural practices in place of traditional over. Successful adoption of improved agricultural practices is predicated upon rural farmer’s acquiring the required knowledge and understanding of these technologies. This will improve productivity and rais4e the living standards of the farmers who are the beneficences of the agent (Lawal, Bodo Toriminobia Makanjuola (2006) the efficiency of technologies generated and disseminated however, depends on effective adoption of the technologies by the end-users.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The failure of the various extension delivery approaches in developing counties to effectively engineer significant and sustainable agricultural growth has become a major concern to all stakeholders, including the donor community. The concerns have been fueled lately by the wave of pluralism, market liberalization and globalization sweeping across the world and giving rise to initiatives that will enhance efficiency and effectiveness of not only the sub-components of extension delivery but the entire system of technology generation, dissemination and use. With a rapidly expending population, environmental degradation, political instability, economies failure and the declining budget, re-thinking the way agricultural technology is delivered to farmers has become necessary. This re-thinking engineered the way we have to investigate the impact of agricultural extension agent in the development of agricultural in Egor local government of Edo-state. 1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
This study is set up to investigate the impact played by agricultural extension in the development of agriculture in the nation using Egor Local Government Area of Edo State as a case study.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
Knowing the impact played by agriculture it will go a long way to encourage both the individual, government and NGO’s to see reason why they have to give more attention to agricultural extension in the country. Also, in an attempt to evaluate the impact of agricultural extension, problems faced by agricultural extension will be look into and possible solution will be suggested which if duly followed will heap in educating and alerting existing agricultural extension agents as a result new agents on what to expect as an extension agent.
1.5 RESEARCH QUESTION
1. What is people’s Understanding about agricultural extension? 2. Have you been visited by extension agent?
3. What impact does this visit plays in your agricultural life style?
4. What are the problems militating the best usage of agricultural extension?
1.6 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H0: the introduction of Agricultural extension agent has no significant impact on the agricultural development in egor local government area of Edo state.
H1: the introduction of Agricultural extension agent has significant impact on the agricultural development in egor local government area of Edo state.
1.6 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This study will look into the impact of agricultural extension on the development of agricultural in the country and the case is Egor Local Government Area of Edo-state. The populations for this study comprise of the farmers in the local government as well as agricultural extension agents.
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