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EVALUATING STUDENT’S PERCEPTION ON POLITICAL PARTICIPATION ENHANCEMENT AND THE ROLE OF CIVIC EDUCATION IN NIGERIA

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: EVALUATING STUDENT’S PERCEPTION ON POLITICAL PARTICIPATION ENHANCEMENT AND THE ROLE OF CIVIC EDUCATION IN NIGERIA
: Chapter 1 – 5
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Keywords: EVALUATING STUDENT’S PERCEPTION ON POLITICAL PARTICIPATION ENHANCEMENT AND THE ROLE OF CIVIC EDUCATION IN NIGERIA


RESEARCH BODY

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1       BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

The history of political participation in the more than half a century of Nigeria’s existence as a sovereign nation-state which is a chronicle of political uncertainties. Since its independence in 1960, Nigeria has been struggling to install a viable and durable democracy but its dismal political actuality characterized by consistent inability to conduct credible and transparent elections which will make its citizens to have access adequately enforce it with effective protected opportunities, to exercise their franchise in the choice of their leaders, has made the agenda of democratic sustainability largely a mirage. This accounts for the failed attempts at democratic transitions. For instance the collapse of the First and Second Republics and the annulment of the June 12, 1993 General Elections and the consequent abortion of the Third Republic (Dudley 1982, Akinsanya 2005; Agbaje 2005).

Societies have long had an interest in the ways in which their youngs are prepared for political involvement on how they learn to take part in civic life. Today, that interest might better be described as a concern, particularly in democratic societies. There is evidence aplenty that no country including Nigeria, has achieved the level of understanding and acceptance of the rights and responsibilities among the totality of its citizens that is required for the maintenance and improvement of any constitutional democracy.

Nigerians should realize that civic education is essential to sustain our constitutional democratic institution. The habits of the mind as well as habit of the heart, the dispositions that inform the democratic ethos, are not inherited.

There is more important task than the development of an informed, effective and responsible citizenry. Democracies are sustained by citizens who have the required knowledge, skills and dispositions. It is imperative that educators, policy makers and members of the civil society should make the case and ask for the support of civic education from all segments of society and from the widest range of institutions and governments.

It is relatively easy for a society to produce technically competent people. But the kind of society Nigerians want to live in and the kind of government they want to have requires effort and commitment on the part of its citizens. Nigerians wants a society and a government in which:

human rights are respected

the individual’s dignity is acknowledged

the rule of law is observed

people willingly fulfill their responsibilities and

the common good is the concern of all

Making that kind of society, that kind of government a reality is the most important challenge, Nigerians are expected to face and the most important work they could undertake.

The world in the twenty first century is shifting towards democratic system of government, various innovative ideas are being pioneered by political analyst aided by the new order of information and communication technology. Concepts such as electronic voting, e-registration of voters, e-validation of voters cards, online political interaction/campaign, among others abound, across the globe yet most developing nations are still struggling to attain socio-political and economic balance. While their citizens still display much concern towards political process including election, due to uninformed perception. Most of them refuse to participate in statutory obligation and to even demand for their rights,this is extended to socio-economic involvement. The leadership behaviour is another disservice that engenders and further discourages citizen participation in government affairs, some of our leaders are self centered, particularist and not individualist. This situation can be recorded positively through Civic Education and citizens enlightment of how, what and when to actively involved in politics.

For democracy to flourish and survive in a nation, its citizens must posses the skills, attitude values manifest behaviours and understand the basic features and principle of a democratic political system to be able to access it when their interests are at stake, value and imbibe tolerance for divergent view points and support for rule of law. They must also be willing and able to participate in local and national politics through civic education to become properly informed about their rights and obligations including participation in government. Civic education is examined as a process with which to jump-start the acquisition of the much needed process of political socialization. Thus the following constitutes the main focus of civic education:

To introduce citizens to the basic rules and institutional features, principles and practices of democratic political systems.

To convey a specific set of values such as political tolerance, trust in the democratic process respect for the rule of law and compromise and to encourage responsible and informed political participation.

To make people powerful and capable of participating to the fullest in a democratic society and creating a democratic society.

promotes recipients’ understanding of the political system and interests to contribute to governments

1.2       STATEMENT TO THE PROBLEM

Students’ are needed in Nigeria political system, they need to be included in all the affairs of the country but reverse is the case.

The participation of students in Nigeria politics has over the years been less than encouraging. The nations political landscape is agog with activities, each day more aspirants are coming-out to declare their intention in election.

Nigeria students have encountered a number of problems while venturing into politics. There appears to be a large proportion of discrimination from the men folk, both in voting for candidates and in allocating political offices.

Political education is an important component of students participation that equips citizens with necessary knowledge, skills and attitude to participate in the public life of a state, to know their rights and discharge their responsibilities whichis expected by being responsive in the act of governance. The term political education is used to cover the larger past of educating the citizens so that they can take responsibility for their roles within democratic state and exercise their rights as the citizen. Political education seeks to make people powerful and capable of participating to the fullest in a democratic society and create a democratic society. Inview of this, the main problem of this research is to find out the students perception on the enhancement of political participation in Nigeria.

1.3       OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY

The main objective of this study is to examine student’s perception on the enhancement of political participation in Nigeria (A case study of Federal College of Education, Abeokuta).

Specific objectives of the study includes:

To find out student’s perception on the role of political participation.

To find out the importance of political education to sustainable democracy

To examine the approaches to political education.

To examine the significant benefits that political education can provide

1.4       SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

The significance of this study is the creation of awareness to the society regarding the finding of the ways to improving students’ perception on the enhancement of political education in Nigeria.

It is also significant in the sense that it supplements the effort being made by the government and school authorities in Nigeria in order to improve the ways in which political education is taught.

1.5       RESEARCH QUESTIONS

For the purpose of this research work, the following questions have been formulated:

What roles do civic education play in the enhancement of political participation?

What are the importance of political education to sustainable democracy?

What are the impact of students political participation in Nigeria?

How can political education be beneficial to Nigerian students?

What are the perceptions of student on the enhancement of political involvement?

1.6       SCOPE OF THE STUDY

The scope of this study will cover student’s perception on the enhancement of political participation in Nigeria.

In order to come out with a vivid result, this study is limited to the 5 selected schools in Federal College of Education include; School of Science, School of Languages, School of Art and Social Science, School of Vocational and School of Education.

1.7       DEFINITION OF TERMS

This research work encompasses some basic concepts which needs to be defined. These concepts are as follows:

Students: is a learner or someone who attends an education institution.

Perception: means the ability to understand or notice something easily.

Enhancement: means to raise to a higher degree or intensify.

Political Participation: means the ability to take part in the conduct of public affairs; and the opportunity to register as a candidate, to campaign, to be elected and to hold office at all levels of government.

Keywords: EVALUATING STUDENT’S PERCEPTION ON POLITICAL PARTICIPATION ENHANCEMENT AND THE ROLE OF CIVIC EDUCATION IN NIGERIA



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Keywords: EVALUATING STUDENT’S PERCEPTION ON POLITICAL PARTICIPATION ENHANCEMENT AND THE ROLE OF CIVIC EDUCATION IN NIGERIA



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