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The accountants the business and the economy are inseparable. They are mostly needed in resolving various conflicting investment decision, initiating and coordinating meaning of economic development and growth. In Nigeria, this function has largely been restricted to the reporting role, book-keeping accounting and auditing.
This research project is thus a search part for what the role of the accountant, has been and what it should be in enhancing economic development in the area of company formation and profitable business acquisition. Moreover in this period of high business mortality rate, what the role of the accountant in corporate rescuer should be.
Chapter one of the study lays an introduction for subsequent chapters. Following the background of the study, the problem statement and the objective of the study which provided basis for the significance of the study and the hypothesis were stated. The limitations of this study were also highlighted.
In the literature review as contained in chapter two, works of various authors, international and local journals were reviewed to elicit views on the roles and relevance of the account in business and economic development.
Chapter three, research methodology, description of population and sampling procedure for data collection were discussed. Methods of questionnaire design, determination of sampling size and questionnaire distribution were also highlighted.
Chapter four was based on analysis of data collected. This chapter was sub-divided into data analysis, hypothesis testing and summary. Percentage table, figure and narration were carefully employed for proper understanding and testing of hypothesis.
Finally, chapter five was divided into summary of findings, recommendation and conclusion.
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
There are available statistics to illustrate the extent of the challenges which need to be surmounted in Nigeria’s efforts to attain the MDGs. One of the greatest threats in this regard is the level and extent of poverty which is prevalent in the rural areas. Statistics on income and social indicators show poverty in Nigeria to be wide spread and severe and the trend increasing. According to Federal Office of statistics (FOS) and World Bank, the population of the poor in Nigeria which was 36.1 million in 1985 and 34.7million in 1992, has jumped to 55.8 million in 1997(Human Development report, 1998).
The calculation of the human poverty index for Nigeria shows that it is 41.6, meaning that the people are extremely deprived, with one in every two Nigerians is poor (Human Development report, 1997). In terms of the proportion of the poor the total population available statistics indicates that in1960 the poverty level in Nigeria covers about 15% of the population and by 1980 it grew to 28.0%. In 1985 the poverty level was 46.0% which dropped 43.0% by 1992.By 1996, the poverty level in Nigeria was estimated at66% and about 70% of the population have become poor by 2001 (FOS, 2003; FGN, 2002). According to World Bank Reports, 1999 (In Aliyu, 2001), Nigeria’s Human Development Index (HDI) was only 0.416 which placed the country among the 25 poorest countries in the world. Furthermore, life expectancy at birth was 51 years, literacy rate was 44% and 70% of the rural population do not have access to portable water, healthcare facilities and electricity. Infant mortality rate (per 1000 live births) and under-five mortality rates were 82 and 191, respectively in 1995. Information from the National Bureau of Statistics indicated that the literacy rate ranged between 49.335% for male and 62.25% for female with respect to inability to read and write in English language. The rate for those who cannot read and write in any Nigerian language were 60.17% for male and 49.39% for female.
The national net primary school enrolment rate was 81.19% which suggests that29 out of every 100 primary school children are not in (Fajonyomi, 2006).Poverty in Nigeria has been described as poverty amidst plenty (Human Development report, 1998). This is attested by the fact that Nigeria is endowed with both natural and human resources which if wisely managed can no doubt make it possible to attain the MDGs. There are other challenges especially with respect to the other MDGs. With reference to MDG 6, the spread of HIV/AIDS has increased significantly in Nigeria since the first official report of the first case in 1986. Information culled from the National HIV/AIDS and Reproductive Health Survey (NARHS, 2005) indicated a progressive increase in the HIV/AIDS prevalence rate from 1.8% in1991, through 4.5% in 1996 to 5.8% in 2001.
However, they appear to be a reversal in trend with the 2003survey result of 5.0% (FMOH, 2003b) and 4.4% in 2005.About 2.9 million Nigerians are estimated to be living with HIV/AIDS in 2005. From the statistics, it is glaring that the AIDS pandemic continues to be a major health and development challenge in Nigeria.
Another health of critical significance in meeting the MDG is maternal morbidity and mortality. Though there are variations across states and ecological zones in Nigeria, in general statistics shows that the country has a high level of maternal mortality. Based unavailable estimates of 800 maternal deaths per 100,000live births, Nigeria records about 37,000 maternal deaths annually, the third highest in the world (WHO,2004). Poor health seeking behavior, poor availability of obstetrics services and poor quality of services are major factors associated with high maternal morbidity and mortality rates in Nigeria. There are sharp urban rural differences in access to health services. Women in rural areas generally have relatively poor level of utilization of health services. According to the National Health and Reproductive survey (NHRHS) (2003), the proportion of urban mothers (59%) that were assisted by skilled attendants at delivery was more than twice that of rural women (25%). Urban women are three times as likely to receive post-natal care as rural women (Federal Ministry of Health, 2005). The goal of improving maternal health in the country have also been hampered by lack of friendly policies to encourage a services by women as well as other site specific constraints in different parts of the country. A survey in Kano state north eastern Nigeria shows that most deaths of pregnant women were due to hypertension and late referral, and the reasons for this according to Yusuf (2006) are:
1. Lack of competent health personnel;
2. Inadequate health facilities;
3. Poor health seeking behaviors (patients waiting until crisis point);
4. Rural dwellers power relations between men and women, especially as regards domestic decision-making;
5. Low educational status of women
6. Inadequate postnatal Emergency Obstetrics Care services;
7. Muslim women have problems with accessing health services promptly, mainly because they have to seek permission from their spouse and there is disapproval of non-same-sex medical attendants.
In general, there are several other challenges facing Nigeria in meeting the MDGs. These include:
1. Decay of infrastructure;
2. The size of the population;
3. Mismanagement of public resources;
4. The capacity of the public service to deliver;
5. Corruption and lack of transparency
6. The common characteristics of many
Nigerian politician to be only interested in what they can gain from the office and an obsession with how to remain in office, rather than thinking of the public benefits;
1. Lack of adequate funding for public education and inequitable allocation of resources between rural and urban areas;
2. Cultural which include religious and social impediments to rural dwellers equality
3. Lack of sufficient care and appropriate laws to protect the environment.
It is very important that the above statistics an discussion shows clearly those mounting challenges which Nigeria needs to overcome in a bid to reach MDGs and ensure improve welfare for her people, especially the rural dwellers.
The MDGs were introduced and agreed on at the united nation millennium summit in September 2000 with nearly 190 countries, including Nigeria as signatories to the agreement. The eight MDGs were:
1. Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
2. Achieve universal primary education;
3. Promote rural dwellers equality and empower women
4. Reduce child mortality
5. Improve maternal health
6. Combat HIV and AIDS, malaria and other diseases
7. Ensure environmental sustainability
8. Develop a global partnership for development
According to DFID  the MDGs were introduced as of a wider attempt to encourage the international community to stop talking about making a difference in developing world and join forces to start doing something about it. Alongside the goals a series of 18 targets were also drawn up to give the international community a number of tangible improvement to aim for within a fixed period of time, and also make it easier for them to progress to date . The intention is that almost all of these targets will be achieved by 2015.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The MDG in 2000 formulated strategic goals to be achieved in the year 2015. After many years of implementation, the goals of MDG is far from being attained. The problem confronting this research is to investigate the impact of MDGS on the standard of living of the people in rural areas.
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