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Over the decades, the Nigerian government established a range of institutions and initiatives to address poverty, youth restiveness, conflict and under-development in the Niger Delta region. This study is an Evaluation of the Human Capital Development Programs of the Niger Delta Development Commission, 2000-2015. The objectives of the study were to examine the nature of Human capital development programs (HCDPs) ofNDDC, identify the beneficiariesof NDDC‟s HCDPs, assess the impact of NDDC‟s HCDPs on the people, examine the people perception of NDDC‟s HCDPs and identify the challenges of NDDC‟s HCDPs. Literature were reviewed in line with the study‟s objectives. Human capital theory served as the theoretical framework for the study. The study was carried out across three local government areas of Delta State; namely, Udu, Uvwie and Warri South. The study adopted quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection. The quantitative data instrument was astructured questionnaire. Four hundred copies of the questionnaire were administered to respondents across the three local government areas, out of which, three hundred and seventy-seven copies were returned. In-addition, the qualitative technique of in-depth interview (IDI) was used. To this end, ten key informants were interviewed. The quantitative data was analyzed through simple statistical analysis and interpretation, while the qualitative data was analyzed in a thematicform. On the nature of NDDC‟s HCDPs, the study revealed that,scholarship and skill acquisition were the most provided HCDPs. The study further revealed that, the poor, illiterate and rural areas benefited less from NDDC‟s HCDPs. The study also found that, the HCDPs of NDDC have not substantially impacted on the socio-economic development of the people as poverty is high and the anticipated peace and stability goals of NDDC‟s HCDPsare yet to be attained. The result of the study further indicated that NDDC‟s HCDPs is seriously affected by corruption and favoritism. On the basis of the study‟s findings, it was recommended that, NDDC‟s leadership must have a strong political will to address corruption through leadership by example. In addition, persons of proven integrity should manage the HCDPs of NDDC. Also, the HCDPs of NDDC should be diversified to include agriculture, particularly fishery and poultry. The study also recommended that, the rural areas should be carried along through the establishment of more training centers in those areas.
1.1 Background of Study
The socio-economic development of a society is vital for its progress and sustainability.
In view of this, the various political regimes in Nigeria have embarked on development
projects in the Niger Delta region that were executed by various commissions. This was
aimed at improving the living conditions of the people in order to address problems of
underdevelopment. Gandu (2011) asserted that there arewidespreadconcerns and
acknowledgementthat unemployment is one of the major problems in the Niger Delta.
Also, due to the neglect of oil-producing communities by successive governments in
Nigeria, poverty is endemic in the region. Economic activities have been destroyed by
oil-prospecting operations.In addition, only a tiny few individuals (Chiefs/elites) are
benefiting from contracts awarded by oil companies to the detriment of the general
community (NDDC Act, 2000).
These prevailing conditions have resulted to militancy and youth restiveness in the region
which haveaffected meaningful socio-economic development of the region. The
prevailing situation of poverty and human development according to Egbogah
(2010)paints adismal picture, particularly when the region is compared with other oil –
producing regions in the world. The results of this low level of human capital
development program are disillusionment and frustration. In 2000, the United Nation
Development Programmes(UNDP)observed most of the problems facing the economy of
Niger Delta region are a reflection of the poor quality of the human development and
There have been several attempts to develop the Niger Delta region right from the pre-
independence period. The first wasWillink‟s Commission of Enquiry of 1958 to investigate
whether or not the grievances and demands of the Niger Delta region were true or ill-
founded. The commission submitted its report to the British parliament on July 30,
1958.The reportindicated that the Niger Delta region was “poor, backward and neglected”.
Thus, the Niger Delta Development Board (NDDB) was established by an Act of parliament
in April 1961. It became clear that after nine years of its establishment, NDDB did not
develop the region, as a result of inherent structural administrative and funding problems
(Dappabiriye,1995).In an effort to develop the region, subsequent bodies were set up. The
Niger Delta Basin Development Authority, (NDBDA) was established in 1976 (Etekpe,
2009). It failed woefully due to organizational problem and representation problem based
on the fact that none of the board members appointed by the federal government to run the
project came from Niger Delta region(National Development Review, 2009).
During the civilian administration of President ShehuShagari, the administration decided to
reinstate the principle of derivation and pay 1.5% ofrevenue to the oil- producing areas. It
also set up a Presidential Task Force to administer the fund. That amount was considered
inadequate and the level of restiveness intensified.This compelled the president Ibrahim
Babangida to raise it to three percent (3%) and to set up the Oil Mineral Producing Areas
Development Commission (OMPADEC) in July 1992 to administer it. Despite the huge
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