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Leadership And The Challenges Of Development In Nigeria Fourth Republic, 2015-2021



1.1 Background of the study

1.2 Statement of the problem

1.3 Objective of the study

1.4 Research question

1.5 Hypothesis of the study

1.6 Significance of the study

1.7 Scope of the study

1.8 Limitation of the study

1.9 Definition of terms



3.1 Research Design

3.2 Population of the study

3.3 Sample size determination

3.4 Sample size selection technique and procedure

3.5 Research Instrument and Administration

3.6 Method of data collection

3.7 Method of data analysis

3.8 Validity and Reliability of the study


4.1 Data Presentation

4.2 Answering Research Questions


5.1 Summary

5.2 Conclusion

5.3 Recommendation







1.1 Background of the study

Issues relating to leadership and development continue to gain currency around the world, especially, in the developing countries like Nigeria. The simple reason for this is that, the two concepts have direct bearing on the well-being of the people, especially, the poor masses. If a country is blessed with resources, human and material, the expectation should logically be a high level of development. However, if this expectation is not met, then, there is the need for a critical examination of the situation. What makes this issue more crucial is that, poverty and suffering is not evenly distributed among the people, and sometimes, this uneven distribution cannot be rationally justified on hard work or cleverness. Nyerere ( 1969) was certainly right when he wrote that: “ There must be something wrong in a society where one man, however hard working or clever he may be, can acquire as a great ‘reward’ as a thousand of his fellows can acquire between them.” In a similar vein, in a country like Nigeria, we have a situation of an ‘affluent society’ as described by Azikiwe (1980, 124) According to the sage, an affluent society is where there are few very rich and very many very poor. How can the leadership of this country help to create an abundant society which is characterized by: “abundant food, abundant shelter, abundant clothing, abundant necessities of life and abundant amenities, within a reasonable cost and within the reach of many”.

Outside the territorial landscape of traditional development models, the creation of economic development and its sustenance are not solely determined by the availability of economic factors but also the quality of institutions that manage economic resources (Moses et al, 2013). Within the spotlight of this analytical paradigm, the standing proclamation is that no matter the amount of economic resources a country has; the development and utilizations of such resources largely depends on leadership or management. In any event, where the management of national resources is entrusted in the hands of parasites and kleptomaniacs, there will be no need for rocket science to make a logical conclusion for pessimism and hopelessness in terms of achieving the targeted objectives and better results.

No economy has ever grown to the age of maturity if the fundamental body structures of development parameters are under the tutelage of misguided personalities because bad leadership and economic development are inversely related just as poor management and development are mutually exclusive. Evidence of that is Nigeria. Nigeria has all the financial and material resources to be an economic powerhouse not only in Africa but the rest of the world. The monies, materials and other resources that are provided meant for developmental projects in education, infrastructure and all other social services that add values to human lives are either mismanaged or diverted for private gains. The leadership environment in Nigeria has become a money making venture and an avenue for easy stealing of national wealth with political protection. Beyond political rhetoric, the Nigeria’s economic backwardness is as a result of bad leadership.

For more than five decades, Nigeria has failed to provide meaningful life for her citizens as a result of the lacked of political will. The problem of Nigeria is underdevelopment. The problem of underdevelopment in Nigeria is corruption and the problem of corruption is bad leadership. From structural perspective, the ugly picture of economic backwardness in Nigeria is the paradox of growth without development. Statistically, in the late 2014 Nigeria was ranked the biggest economy in Africa (CBN report, 2014). But in practical terms, it is an economy whose growth has never reflected in the living standard of Nigerians. Economic indicators such as poor industrialization, high rates of unemployment and poverty are coming from a history of exponential growth. In modern economic literature, the consensus is that the profit of economic growth is economic development because there would be no economic development without growth (John etal, 2010).

If the Nigerian economy was practically growing; then the fruits of those growths have always been enjoyed by the privileged few or the nation’s elites especially those who occupied political seats of power with parasitic ideologies that at all times promote the commanding erosion of national wealth for exclusive benefits via the created holes of leakages and externalities. No functioning economy anywhere in the world thrives if the leadership of that country ignores the industrial sector, promotes the importation of foreign goods and remained insensitive to national insecurity. No democratic country anywhere in the world can create economic development if over 80% of its national income is spent on politicians and political processes. With regard to the former in particular, the Nigerian industrial sector was historically murdered by the country’s leadership both past and present by refusing to provide enabling environment for investors, market behaviours and sustainable confidence.

Nigeria is an economy that operates without electricity; with decaying infrastructure and a country that is enveloped with insecurity and terrorism. Apart from the loss of human lives and destruction of properties of higher commercial values, their second round effects are the destabilizing forces against investor confidence both local and foreign. Because of the extreme government’s neglects to the country’s educational sector which is the engine growth of manpower productivity, the nation’s tertiary institutions have been feeding the economy with unqualified graduates and unproductive manpower. Across every aspect of Nigerian economy are structural deformities and broken value chain which have tremendously made it absolutely impossible for Nigeria economy to develop. The Nigerian economic disabilities have been consciously allowed to remain permanent because there are people who profits from the underdevelopment of Nigeria (Sanusi, 2014). A permanent pregnancy is an abnormal situation to the mother and her unborn child. Bad leadership is the primary cause of all problems in Nigeria politically, economically and socially. Bad leadership is the problem of corruption in Nigeria and all other components of development stimulus.

The aim of this study is to contribute to the existing related literature not only in terms of re-examining the challenges of development in Nigeria from political perspective but also by extension to suggest the possible way forward towards overcoming such challenges. We look into the concepts of development from a philosophical prism, leadership orientation and how they impact the level of development of the Nigerian state.

1.2 Statement of the problem

The frequent cases of bribery, corruption, frauds or embezzlement of funds coupled with other social ills such as nepotism, tribalism and the like are highly worrisome in Nigeria. These vices are very rampant and seem to portray that leadership has been myopic and unfruitful on the whole. So far, there seem to be no end in sight in the scheme of things going by the wide-spread poverty, hunger, sickness, unemployment and lack of social cum economic amenities that plaque Nigeria.

The problem of leadership and its pervasive bearing on social cum economic development in Nigeria is multifaceted. Now, the root cause of underdevelopment in Nigerian problem is attributed to bad leadership. There is nothing basically wrong with the Nigerian character. There is nothing wrong with the Nigerian land, climate, water, air, or anything else. The Nigerian problem is the unwillingness or inability of its leaders to rise to their responsibility, to the challenge of personal example, which is the hallmark of true leadership.

Political analysts, policy watchers and developmental researchers indicate that Nigeria is fraught of poor leadership, corruption and weak bureaucratic institutions. It is an axiom that since attainment of political independent, Nigeria has never been governed by selfless, truly transformational and intellectually endowed leaders. That is, Nigeria has never selected its best sons to positions of leadership and mediocre leadership can only lead to mediocre government without any meaningful development. It is against this backdrop that this research study seeks to explore the relationship between leadership and the challenges of development in Nigeria from 2015-2021 with a special reference to Osisioma Ngwa Local Government Area.

1.3 Objective of the study

The major objective of this study is to examine the Leadership and the challenges of development in Nigeria’s fourth republic, 2015-2021. Other specific objectives are:

  1. To examine the relationship between leadership and development crisis in Abia State.
  2. To investigate the effect of leadership on socio-economic development in Nigeria.

iii. To determine the effect of leadership on grass-root development in Abia State.

1.4 Research question

This research work shall be guided by the following research questions:

  1. What is the relationship between leadership and development crisis in Abia State? ?
  2. What is the effect of leadership on socio-economic development in Nigeria ?

iii. What is the effect of leadership on grass-root development in Abia State ?

1.5 Hypothesis of the study

The following hypothesis were formulated and tested by the study

Ho: Leadership has no significant impact on development in Nigeria’s fourth republic

Hi: Leadership have a significant impact on development in Nigeria’s fourth republic

1.6 Significance of the study

Abia State is among the states in Nigeria endowed with natural and valuable resources that are capable of improving socio-economic status and living standards of the people.

It conceptual, theoretical and empirical studies will be a furtherance of understanding of salient issues in the parlance of leadership and developmental challenges in Abia State.

The outcomes of the study will also serve as a useful tool for students in the University, who would want to carry out further research in this domain.

Finally, the outcomes of the investigation would be significant to policy makers and implementers at large, as they would find the result and policy recommendations of this study as a call to action.

1.7 Scope of the study

The scope of the study is the research boundary of the study. The scope of the study concerns the thrust of Leadership and Development Crisis in Nigeria State having Osisioma Ngwa Local Government Area of Abia State as its study area.

1.8 Limitation of the study

It is envisaged that in the course of this research study, a lot of constraints and limitations might be encountered. Collection of qualitative and quantitative data for this study may pose a major constraint, as the researcher has to be on the field personally in all the data collection processes.

Financial constraints will also pose a major limitation during the investigation. The researcher would want to broaden the scope of the study but for financial constraints. Time is another limitation that will be encountered during the course of the study. Balancing this research study with normal academic work is a challenge to the researcher already.

In a whole, it is anticipated that all these limitations will not affect or mar the validity of outcomes of the research study.

1.9 Definition of terms

The following are the operational definition of key terminologies used in the study;

Leadership: Refers to the behavioural pattern which the recognized leader of the group brings to bear on the members for the accomplishment of the corporate objective through encouragement, open decision making process, persuasion, influence, identification with group or otherwise (Ezirim, 2010).

Leadership Style: This can be defined as the general approach or principle adopted by the governing class.

Development: It is the qualitative and qualities, self-improvement of man that applies to whole societies and people.  It means the removal of obstacles to the progressive or qualitative transformation of man and such obstacles include hunger, poverty, ignorance, disease, mal-nutrition, unemployment, to mention but a few.

Poverty: this refers to a state of one being unable to meet the basic needs (health care, shelter, food, clothing, etc) of life. It is a state of lack.

Embezzlement: This is said to be the unlawful use of government fund for the purpose of enrichment of self-interests.

Infrastructure: This can be describe as social amenities such as good roads, houses, bridges, hospitals, schools, electricity.


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