Current Economic and Political Dispensation and Teacher Education Programs in Niger Delta Region: Means of Enhancing Teacher Education

Current Economic and Political Dispensation and Teacher Education Programs in Niger Delta Region: Means of Enhancing Teacher Education

Nwachukwu Prince Ololube (Ignatius Ajuru University of Education, Nigeria), Nanighe Baldwin Major (Niger Delta University, Wilberforce Island, Nigeria) and Peter James Kpolovie (University of Port Harcourt, Nigeria)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-8162-0.ch021
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In this chapter we highlighted the impact of the current economic and political dispensation in Nigeria and its impact on teacher education programs and the means of enhancing teacher education in the Niger Delta region. This paper is a conceptual and methodological breakthrough in Nigeria's academic landscape where qualitative and quantitative experiences highlight issues that are pertinent to teacher education program in the Niger Delta. The chapter proposed that the Niger Delta region's and the entire Nigeria's teacher education programs would be advanced if the component parts of the current economic and political disposition are resolved. This chapter contends that the Niger Delta region has the potential to address the challenges currently faced in the region such as social disruption (violence threat), poverty, hunger, disease, conflict, marginalization, and the achievement and improvement for effective teacher education programs. This chapter is of the immense judgment that successfully addressing the challenges currently faced in the Niger Delta region, teacher education programs will greatly improve qualitatively and quantitatively.
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The current global disorder in economic and political dispensation has greatly impacted on teacher education programs and efforts are being made towards enhancing teacher education. Nigeria is not left out in this global disorder in economic and political disaster. The emerging paradigm for understanding global vulnerabilities in teacher education, the present economic and political dispensation challenges threatens the traditional notion of global stability. The argument is that the reference should be the individual rather than the state. However, economic and political disposition of a nation is necessary for national, regional and global stability.

Economic dispensation of a country is the manner in which economic resources are managed for development purposes. A country’s political dispensation on the other hand is the system of governance that is in operation in a country at a particular period of time. Such dispensation could be democratic or autocratic (Saibu, Fakanbi, & Agboola, 2011). The place of any nation’s economic and political issues is now widely used to describe the complex and interrelated threats associated with communal crises, genocide and the displacement of populations, hunger, poverty, disease, etc.

Modern economic and political dispensations encompass democracy, greater human rights, good governance, access to quality education and good health care and ensuring that citizens have opportunities and choices to fulfil their potentials. It further encompasses safety from such chronic threats as hunger, disease and repression, protection from sudden and hurtful disruptions in the patterns of daily life–whether in homes, in jobs or in communities. In concrete terms, it is an integrated, sustainable, and comprehensive security from fear, conflict, ignorance, poverty, social and cultural deprivation, and hunger, resting upon positive and negative freedoms (UNDP, 1994; Ginkel & Newman, 2000). Every effort and movement towards this direction is a step towards reducing poverty, achieving economic growth and preventing conflict in line with the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015 (UNESCO, 2005; Ololube, Egbezor & Kpolovie, 2008).

The general opinion by many (e.g., Saibu, Fakanbi, & Agboola, 2011) shows that democracy is generally supportive of positive macroeconomic performance. As a result, most economies in the world now practice democracy as opposed to other non democratic systems of government. Democracy is a desirable system of governance all over the world. However, the experiences of many countries, developed and developing alike have left many in doubt as to the relevance of democracy to positive economic and political performance (Saibu et al., 2011).

Education is a social value that teachers the understandings of democratic social control that creates individuals who do not short change others but works for the good of society as a whole. It helps to address the democratic principles based on access, full participation and equity (Ololube & Major, 2014). However, according to Msila (2007), education is seen as a weapon of transformation and a tool that could root the values enshrined in the constitution, democracy, social justice, non-racism, equality and reconciliation among the fundamental values. Furthermore, education helps define the life, values, political culture, and economic power of a nation. Knowledge, skills, norms, and values of responsible citizenship are inculcated through education. It is through education that the human capitals of any nation is harnessed and deployed for progress. Without education, we have no society, no democracy, and no future (Ozioko & Nwabueze, 2010). The aforementioned cannot be achieved with effective teacher education programs.

Teacher education programs have largely contributed to increase in developing knowledge, providing an enabling environment for innovation and in building human capital required for potential future knowledge economy. Nigeria as a nation sees teacher education as a veritable tool for effecting both national and economic development. The nation’s philosophy of education believe amongst others, that teacher education fosters the worth and development of the individual and for the general development of the society (Federal Republic of Nigeria (FRN), 2004; Ojo & Oviawe, 2010).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Disease: This is a particular abnormal condition that affects part or all of human organs often construed as a medical condition associated with specific signs and symptoms. Disease is often used more broadly to refer to any condition that causes pain dysfunction, distress or death to the person afflicted.

Teacher Education: Refers to the policies and procedures designed to equip would-be-teachers teacher with the skills, knowledge, attitudes, behaviors and abilities required to perform their teaching tasks effectively and efficiently in the classroom.

Poverty: Poverty is general referred to scarcity or situation where citizens lack certain amount of material possessions or money. It can include the deprivation of basic human needs, which commonly includes food, water, sanitation, clothing, shelter, health care and basic education. Thus, it means a relative poverty that manifest economic inequalities in societies.

Violence Threat: Violent threats can be defined as the act of making timid or fearful or of deterring by threats to individuals and communities.

ICT Infrastructures: Include digital satellite television, global satellite telephones, internet, websites, mobile telephony, short message service facilities, and multimedia equipment, such as video, audio, projectors, and pod cast facilities. Also it includes digital media and communication, facilitated by transmission hardware, information sharing and circulation especially in teacher education.

Development: This is a systematic use of scientific and technical skill and knowledge to meet specific aims and objectives, aimed at transforming educational processes.

Hunger: This is a feeling of discomfort or weakness caused by lack of food, coupled with the desire to eat caused by rising costs of living making poor people less able to afford food items

Current Economic: Nigeria is a middle income country, with a mixed economy and emerging market, It is ranked 26th in the world in terms of gross domestic product (GDP) and is the largest economy in Africa following the rebased figures announced in April 2014, with an ambition to become one of the 20 largest economies in the world by 2020. Currently, Nigeria is underperforming in the manufacturing sector however, produces a large proportion of goods and services for the West African region.

Political Dispensation: Political dispensation is an important era in a specified political period defined by its individual uniqueness and has its own demands and expectations. The peculiarities of any political dispensation demand practically the emergence of political parties that contest and win election that eventually emerge a leader that can effectively lead and manage the economy of a nation.

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