ISSN: 0041-3216 (Online), 0041-3216 (Print)
Volume 94 Number 2
Poverty transition in rural Nigeria: Do household idiosyncratic, farm and geo-spatial factors influence movers and stayers?. (185)
The study examined the influence of household demographic, farm and geo-spatial characteristics on seasonal poverty transition among farm households in rural Nigeria using food calories as a marker of poverty. A nationally representative panel data collected during post-planting season of 2010 and post-harvest period of 2011 by the World-Bank/National Bureau of Statistics, Nigeria was used for the study. Markov (Probability) Chain and Probit regression model were the tools for data analysis. Results established evidences of seasonal poverty transitions. Approximately 65% of households that are poor in the post-planting season remained poor during post-harvest period while about 23% of non-poor household cohorts transited into poverty. It was found that 39% of rural households could persist as poor while 61% may remain as non-poor in the long-run, all else being equal. Higher educational attainment and engagement in crop-livestock production would substantially reduce the likelihood of a household entering into, or remaining in poverty while increase in number of adolescents would enhance it. While sole reliance on crop production and geo-spatial factors could substantially depress the chance of escaping poverty, sex of the household head seems to be of less consequence. Promoting educational advancement and crop-livestock farm diversification are advocated, among others, for poverty reduction among farm households. These findings hold significant implications for policy actions on poverty reduction in terms of poverty forecast, design of poverty programmes and suitability of targeting strategies for effective programme delivery within concerns relating to agricultural households, sustainable agriculture and rural development in Nigeria.
Keywords: Poverty transition, Markov chain, rural, food calories, Nigeria