EFFECT OF public policy implementation ON COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA
EFFECT OF PUBLIC POLICY IMPLEMENTATION ON COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA
1.1 Background for the Study
Public policies in Africa have been developed and executed over time with the assistance of international organisations such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
Some have also been developed independently by African political leaders with the goal of achieving drastic and rapid improvement in living conditions following many years of colonial control (Ozumba, 2014).
However, the majority of these policies are shrouded by politics and implementation obstacles. The politicisation of public programmes in Africa has resulted in political parties developing too ambitious programmes to gain political capital, combined with extensive bureaucratic procedures.
Nigeria has been an independent nation for 54 years, with various policies aimed at developing rural communities, but rural areas remain underdeveloped, and the quality of life in rural areas continues to deteriorate across all levels of government, including politicians and military regimes.
Peasant farmers, minor traders, middlemen, and commission brokers make up the majority of community residents in Nigeria. The country has the capacity to develop in all spheres of human endeavour,
particularly if state policies are effectively implemented in rural communities across the country. Rural communities in Nigeria make up the majority of the population, but their neglect and suffering indicate a failure in governmental policy implementation.
The need to bring rural people into the mainstream and contribute effectively to Nigeria's social, cultural, and economic growth necessitates that policy implementation be given top attention. According to Larson (cited in Alinno et al, 2012),
a policy or programme is a method of dealing with public problems, a type of concrete socioeconomic action, a response to the private sector's weakness and inability to supply necessary goods and services, or a response to a missing link within societal norms.
It provides direction for actions and activities. In other words, policy is a spoken, written, or inferred overall guide that establishes boundaries and provides general units with guidance for administrative or managerial conduct.
There is an urgent need to reinforce and promote the effective and adequate execution of policies for community development projects. This would help to alleviate the difficulties of community development that have been of significant concern to Nigeria's various tiers of government, namely urban migration.
The primary goal of Nigeria's rural development programmes is to enhance living conditions in rural regions in order to reduce the flow of rural-urban migration.
Despite the countless number of rural development policies implemented at various times by successive governments, as well as the enormous financial and material resources expended,
little or nothing is felt at the rural level because each policy frequently dies with the government that initiated it before it begins to pay dividends to rural residents.
Onuorah (1996) supports this allegation by stating that, regardless of the lofty goals of these policies, the government's efforts and endeavours were never sustained beyond the government that launched the schemes.
The significance of community development in contemporary Nigerian society cannot be overstated, nor can it be downplayed; it stems from the recognition of the roles it plays in improving the economic,
political, social, and cultural conditions of communities. According to Ugwu (2009:4), community development is a technique that ensures quick national growth.
“community development is one of the major planks upon which National developmental policies and their implementation are hinged” .
As a result, the purpose of this study is to investigate the impact of public policy implementation on community development in Nigeria, with a focus on the primary health care system in the Ojo Local Government Area (LGA) in Lagos State.
1.2 Statement of Problem
A country's growth cannot be accomplished by focusing just on urban areas at the expense of the communities that provide food and labour to the cities. As disheartening as it may appear, Nigeria's rural communities are characterised by persistent and chronic poverty,
as seen by widespread hunger, malnutrition, poor health, and a lack of access to formal education. As a result, these issues stem from unprecedented rural-urban migration, which is caused by community underdevelopment, poverty, and unemployment.
Implementation of public initiatives in Nigeria frequently turns out to be a graveyard, with the aims of policy designers being undercut by a constellation of powerful forces of political corruption and bureaucratic red tape working in tandem with the people.
It is crucial to recognise that primary health care is the foundation of any community's growth and development. Unfortunately, observations revealed that the primary health care system in Ojo Local Government Area of Lagos State is severely hampered by inadequate health facilities and structures,
low motivation and remuneration for health care workers, inequitable and unsustainable health care financing, corruption, incompetence, lack of access to health care, and a shortage of essential drugs, among other issues.
Thus, one wonders if the absence of community development observed in Lagos State's Ojo Local Government Area is unrelated to public policy execution through primary health care in this area.
The question of whether public policy execution has a good or negative impact on community development in Nigeria is still being researched empirically.
As a result, the purpose of this study is to look into the relationship between public policy execution and community development in Nigeria, with a focus on primary health care services in Lagos State's Ojo Local Government Area (LGA).
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The primary goal of this study is to evaluate the impact of public policy execution on community development in Nigeria. While other specific objectives include:
i. Investigate the impact of public policy execution on community development in Nigeria.
ii. Investigate the impact of government interventions on poverty reduction in rural communities.
iii. Determine the influence of public policy on primary healthcare services in the Ojo Local Government Area.
iv. Identify issues and challenges in implementing public policy in Nigeria.
1.4 Research questions.
This study will be directed by the following research questions:
i. How does the implementation of official policies affect community development in Nigeria?
ii. How do government policies impact poverty reduction in rural communities?
iii. What impact does public policy have on primary health care services in Ojo Local Government Area?
iv. Why do governmental policies in Nigeria frequently fail to be implemented?
1.5 Significance of the Study
There have been some differing perspectives on the correlates of public policy execution and community development in Nigeria, therefore this study will be relevant since it tries to fill a vacuum in the literature.
The purpose of this research is to examine how succeeding governments have implemented public policies and how these initiatives have influenced people, both favourably and negatively.
To do this, the study examines public policy from the perspective of community members, who account for more than 70% of Nigeria's population, and makes practical proposals to bring communities out of the depths of underdevelopment.
The study will also be valuable for scholars and researchers in political science and public administration who wish to conduct additional research in this area.
The study's findings will be useful to policymakers and implementers in general, who are responsible for articulating public policies, as they will find the results of this research study and recommendations extremely useful.
1.6 Scope of Study
The scope of this research includes the dynamics of public policy implementation and community development in Nigeria, with a focus on primary health care services in the Ojo Local Government Area (LGA) in Lagos State.
The study will examine current difficulties in public policy implementation with the goal of offering a framework for future solutions.