Through out history, hunting and gathering has been man’s major occupational activity, and later man began to think of how to produce food, rear livestock as well as engaging in commercial activities. However, food productionand rearing of animal in most developing countries is done largely at subsistence level. Agricultural activities such as food production, rearing of animals as well as commercial activities is the mainstay of the economy of the most developing countries. Nigeria has a population of 150 million people, the largest in Africa and a fast growing economy.Agricultural growthin Nigeria is increasingly recognized to be central to sustained improvement in economic development. Agriculture contributed about 45 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP). Agriculture sector employs about two thirds of the country’s total labour force and provides a
livelihood for about 90 percent of the rural population.
The food and agriculture organization (FAO) statistics indicates that, the total number of commercial fishermen and fish farmer’s across the glove was estimated to be one hundred and thirty eight (138) million: fisheries provide direct and indirect employment to over five hundred (500) million people in development countries. The word harvest in 2005 consisted of 93.3 million tones capture by commercial fishing in wild fisheries, plus 48.1 million tones produced by fish farmers. The livelihood for over 500 million people in developing countries depend on fisheries and
Fish production is a sub-sector of agriculture that contributes to the socio-economic development in the country. Nigeria is also a major producer of fish and import large amount of grain, livestock products and fish. The sector plays a very significant role in food security poverty alleviation and human development chain.
In Nigeria, fish production has a very old history of artisanal fishery activities due to availability of numerous inland water bodies such as river Niger, River Benue, among others. Fish production in Nigeria pre-dates the advent of colonialism in Africa.
The industrial revolution brought about a shift from the orthodox trade by barter to a sophisticated marketing system where consumers need and satisfactions become the ultimate goals and economic activities. This revolutionary design made largely scale trawling in the ocean possible for the first time, resulting in a massive migration of people (fishermen) from post in the south of England that were points of access to the large fishing ground in the Atlantic Ocean.2
In Nigeria, the law of the land had provided statutory allocation to all 774 local governments as subvention across the federation known as “external revenue”. A part from this source, Yauri local government has its own ways of generating revenue through internal source. The revenue are generated throughout fish production and commercial fishing activities in the area. fish production is carried out by both male and female actors, I is done on a large scale for domestic consumption and income federation.
People come from neighboring states. For instance from Lagos, Kwara, Oyo, Sokoto and Niger states etc. for economic exchange in the area due to availability of fish in the area. Likewise, some local government within and outside the state such as Zuru, Koko Besse, Maiyama, Bagudo, Jega in Kebbi state and Kontagora, Rijau, Nasko and Agwara local government in Niger state.
Before the discovery of oil in Nigeria, stay economic sector for growth and development in the country was agricultural sector. In line with the above statement, Ingawa (2004) maintain that “Nigeria economy depend largely on oil revenue from petroleum. Of the non-oil sources agricultural activities such as food production, rearing of animals and fish production contributed to the socio-economic in the country. Agriculture also contributes 41% percent (GDP), and 88% percent of the non-oil foreign exchange earning. Agriculture can therefore play a critical role in addressing issue of over dependence on oil revenue”.3
Nigeria is an agricultural country and therefore a country where rural communities predominate. It is in these communities that the overwhelming majorities of its population live and earn their livelihood. Thus, balanced national development can only take place in this country, if we pursue an integrated rural development strategies.4
Economic activities abound every where, in every community. The economic systems of every society vary from one to another. Fishing is agriculture-based occupation but unlike agriculture and livestock rearing, over the year fishing has been a commodity that is free for all. There is no limit to the number of fishermen than can go and fish in a particular lake or river because it is a common property. The concentration of fishermen in fish production and commercial fishing activities in the area has been attributed to the fishing market close to the rich ground, and the availability of numerous inland water bodies in the area. But a downturn in the economy of the country naturally affected all sectors. Consequently, the fishing sector is also being affected by the impacted of the worsening economic situation. Despite the enormous resources in this country, it is disheartening that Nigeria is still rated among the poorest nations in the world today. This has been a burden to the nation and efforts are being made to alleviate or reduce poverty. Therefore, it is in this regard this study intends to appraise the political economy of fish production in Yauri local government area of Kebbi state. Thus, the study seeks to address
1. What are the socio-economic characteristics of the fishermen in the area?
2. How has fishing as an occupation impacted on the living conditions of the people?
3. What are the challenges militating against fish production and commercialization in the study are?
4. What are the possible solutions in addressing the problems identified?
OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The study has the following objectives:
1. To describe the socio-economic characteristics of fishermen in the area.
2. Investigate the profitability of fish production in the area.
3. To identify the challenges faced by the fishermen in fish production in the area.
4. To examine the problems militating against fish production and commercialization in the study area.
5. To suggest possible solutions to the problems identified.
The research study has the following assumptions:
1. Fishermen in Yauri have some socio-economic characteristics.
2. Fish production has not substantially improved the giving condition of the people.
3. There are challenges faced by the fishermen in fish production.
4. There are certain problems militating against fish production and commercialization.
JUSTIFICATION OF THE STUDY
Research has been conducted on economic activities in Yauri local government area in an attempt to generate valid information on socioeconomic development in the area.
Abduljalal Muh’d Z. in his project submitted to department of history, UDUS, “the socio economic importance of fishing in Yauri emirate in the
19th century”, he tried to explain the economic important of fishing to the inhabitant of Yauri and hoe its contributed to the livelihood of the fishermen. He argue that a lot of people only focuses on Arugungu local government area when fishing is subject to discussion in Kebbi state without considering the economic importance of fishing activity in Yauri local government area.5
Hassan Habibu in his work submitted to department of history, UDUS,
“economic activites among the Gungawa people in Yauri emirate”, he tried to explained socio-political and economic activities.6
P.G Harris in his Article “Kebbi fishing” he tried to discussed about the fishermen in Kebbi state with particular references to the riverine areas Yauri, Argungu and Bafudo local government area. But, the significance of this study was in the fact that is focuses on the political economy of fish production in the study area, Yauri local government area of Kebbi state. The study will provide economic importance of fish production, problems faced in the fishermen and possible solutions to the problem.
SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
In this study on political economy of fish production, Yauri local government area of Kebbi state is selected as the study area. There are various economic activities engaged in the area such as food production, rearing livestock, trading among others, but due to the level of commercial fishing activities carried out and its recognition both locally and nationally the production is selected as the focus of the study. Major stakeholders such a producers processors and marketers operating at small, medium and large scale levels are found in the area.
However, this research study is limited to a period of time between 2010-2014 respectively, with a view to generating valid information on socio economic characteristics, income structure, livelihood and profitability of fish production and the challenges that led to withdrawal of artisanal fishermen from abundant fishing activity.
Political economy approach would be employed in this research work. Political economy refers to the study of economic policy, the linkage between political and economic factors in the public policy and related matters. Political economy approach is based on the assumption that much of political activity and political behavior is akin to economic activity and behavior, and that the methods, model and concepts of economist are used with profit in the analysis of political process.8 political economy was first coined by a French writer, Montahivetian de Wetteville in 1615, when he used it to describe the science of wealth acquisition common to the state as well as the family. Watteville wrote in the early period of the great transition from small primordial communities to national social formation and his invention of the concept influenced the emergence of economics as a
scientific discipline in the early 19th century.9
Political economy perspective is the specific ways of studying and understanding social and political phenomena as well as relationship between economic and politics in human social formation. Societies produce food and other basic necessities in order to live and survive, this process entails man’s coming in to contact and interaction with nature which provide other means of production, distribution and exchange. This process of social and political interaction is instrumentalized and ordered the process. However, it is this interaction between economic and political forces that is reversed to as political economy. Political economy views and deals with growth and development of economic system.10
DEFINITION OF TERMS POLITICAL ECONOMY:
According to Professor Suleiman Abdullahi Kano, (2012) sees political economy to the study of economic system, factors in the public policy and related matters. In other words, political economy refers to a way of studying and understanding social and political phenomena as well as the relationship between economic and politic in human society. Political economy entailed the economic growth and development of every humans social formation, and whether the society is developing or not. The concept political economy hold on analysis of human development and fact human being as they relate to production, distribution, exchange and consumption of the basic necessity for human life and human society.11
Fish production in the context of state of world fisheries and
Agriculture report of the food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) refers to the out put of fish by human both from capture fisheries and agriculture. The aim of fish production principally is to produce equality fish food for human consumption.12
According to Osalor (2010), commercialization refers to “the whole process of catching and marketing fish and shell fish for sale. He disclosed that though credible data on the commercial sector is extremely limited, reports indicate the fishing business
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