ABU Journal, Department Of Public Administration
Volume No: 1|
Page No: 152
Title: VALUE REORIENTATION AND THE QUEST FOR DEVELOPMENT HEIGHT IN NIGERIA
*DR. ADAMU IS A SENIOR LECTURER, DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION, ABU ZARIA, NIGERIA
The paper was premised by the fact that most Nigerian communities have negative cultural values that distort the very foundation of development in the country. Public statements from people in authority indicate that something is wrong in terms of our value structure, value posture and value settings all of which require concrete reorientation. Nigeria has serious value crises that have contributed to her poor economy, bad national image and falling standards. It is generally believed that value reorientation aimed at inculcating good value can help Nigeria out of her numerous predicaments which can refocus the nation towards greatness. Archetypical values (a common denominator of values which all citizens sub-consciously strive towards) which steer individual attitudes and thus their ultimate behavior are used for measuring the behavior pattern of Nigerians. An example of the United States that has seven archetypical values is given as: 1. Puritan and pioneer morality; 2. Value of the individual; 3. Achievement and success; 4. Change and Progress; 5. Ethical Equality; 6. Effort and Optimism; 7. Efficiency and Pragmatism. The paper tries to find out the extent to which the behavior of Nigerians in general reflects these archetypical values irrespective of our culture and ethnic groupings. Survey method of data collection is adopted involving questionnaire designed to sample the opinion of Nigerians as regards the extent to which their behavior reflects the variables identified in the American Archetypical Values. The data collected are analyzed using Likert Scale of measurement plus weighted grade point average. It is discovered that the archetypical values of Nigerians which shape their behavior pattern are mostly negative and that play significant role in shaping the development stride of Nigeria. The paper concludes generally that, the overall current archetypical value of Nigerians, if not improved, cannot take the country to any great.
Nigerians show certain level of love, kindness to one another mostly within a given clan, tribe or region but that turns out to be ante developmental in many cases. The extended family system is a typical example that discourages hard work and self-reliance. In the case of justice among individuals in the society as evidence in Table 1 above, very little of it is shown to one another in Nigeria. People turn to be selfish which gives birth to corruption, embezzlements (economic injustice) and nepotism, tribalism, favouritism (socio-political injustice).
In terms of economic behavior pattern, many Nigerians, especially in the Eastern and Western part of the country including some few states in the North, are found to be fairly good in aggressiveness for achievement, aspiration and adaptation to change, hard work and endurance. The result oriented nature of Nigerians is, however, found to be more in distributive rather than in productive economic activities. The desire for quick economic returns is the motivating factor. These, however, cannot take Nigeria towards attaining any great height.
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