The Role Of Radio In Political Mobilization Nigeria Broadcast Media

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This study is geared towards finding  out the  role of television in political  mobilization of rural areas in Nigeria with special reference to Njikoka Local Government . For this study, five rural towns  in Njikoka Local government Area were studied.

The  important of television as the most mobilization  media of mass communication is universally acknowledge, the  use of television is limited  because of some factors  that militate against its full  utilization, such as high cost of  television, maintenance cost and power supply. Most rural communities   are not connected to the electricity. Non availability of television has made some rural communities  to  resort to the old traditional methods of transmitting  information which is counter productive and mockery of  democracy, especially now that we  are at the stage of entering into the new century.

Television has the advantage of audio and visual facilities,  hearing and seeing makes for a lasting impression. Political  and   governments could exploit television to get across their political activities  and agenda to the people politician  could  use it to market their political, ideologies, programmes   and by so doing, win followers and supports through creating awareness and political enlightenment in Nigeria.

This project is a survey research and primary source of data collection for the study in the questionnaire  which is formed  from three main research question. The researcher made use of oral interview also to get across to the illiterate dwellers also to get balanced  data and ensure credibility’s,  reliability of information supplied.

Data collected were analysed and interpreted. The finding reveal that the impact of television in not yet  fully and enjoyed by many in  Njikoka zone because of the high cost of television and lack of electricity supply for those who own TC sets. In this democratic era,  rural, dwellers needs political, education, awareness and enlightenment. The government should therefore do something to improve the economy of the nation to enable may to be  position to own T.V sets. They should also embark on rural electrification and political education. Ministry of information and that of public utilities  should consider the possibility of providing and developing rural television viewing centres for the general public.

Adult services should be encouraged and established  in rural  communities to eradicate illiteracy.

Television authorities  should run more programmes to carry rural dwellers along.  The researcher hoped  that the suggestions would enhance political mobilization and public enlightenment.




1.1       Background of  the Study

Uses of Television

Assessment of various media

1.2              Statement of the research problems

1.3              Purpose of the Study

1.4              Significance  of the Study

1.5              Research Questions

1.6              Research Hypotheses

1.7              Definitions of Term

Conceptual Definitions

Operational Definitions

1.8              Limitation of The Study


2.1              Source  of Literature review

2.2              The Review

2.3              Summary Review


3.1              Research Method

3.2              Research Design

3.3              Research Sample

3.4              Measuring Instrument

3.5              Data Collection


4.1              Data Analysis








1.1              BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

This study will delve  into an in-depth appraisal  of role of television in the political mobilization of rural area in Nigeria. However, the Nigeria Electorate in recent years has  always been in intensely individualistic  group. Hence political  parties  will always confront profound culture  differences. Given  the cultural structure of the Nigerian electorate, the important of television programmes cannot be overemphasized. The role of television in political mobilization in the annulled 1993 presidential is one of   the  greatest challenges facing the electorate especially  those  in the rural areas. This also is  a typical case of   election  malpractices that have been  the lot of Nigeria elections.

Television  on it’s own part is an electronic gadgets wit the combination of sound and pictures. It  is mot effective spontaneous  message carrier of our time. Its  conciseness  brings to the masses especially  the rural dwellers in on the spot account of the event  making it number one when  compared to any other medium. Admittedly television  may  be expensive  as to have it in every home or to be affordable  to most people in the rural  areas but when its ability to satisfy curiosity by allowing you see for yourself  is not just  an overstatement.  Again its ability  to disseminate  information in our various dialects also serves as atomic  to  language barrier. Television as an integral  part of the  fourth estate of the realm, is expected as usual to play its traditional role as a watchdog  of the society and as agent of change and innovations. In rural areas advertisement role  on political  trend aspirant responsiveness to the medium has become a  major feature of campaigns for public office at national state and local  government level. Most rural dwellers are known to be financially poor because of their low education status and cannot afford television sets. This  has often been a problem to efficient and effective use of television in achieving  political  mobilization in the rural area. All things being equal, the term, television and political mobilization refers to all kinds of political  services rendered to the  populace  to bring about information, Education, entertainment and influence in the rural dwellers. Apart from the general  rile, it enhance and encourage through its  various programmes the acquisition  and pursuit of knowledge thereby  promoting national consciousness  and acts as a powerful means of social mobilization.

i.                    USES OF TELEVISION: Television has many uses other than broadcasting programmes at the home. For  example, school, businesses, hospitals and many other Organizations use closed   circuit  television. In closed circuit Television, signal are set by way of wire to only certain television sets rather to all sets within the area that broadcast signals could reach. Since the late 1970s, such equipments  as video cassette record, video dis players and personal computers have changed the way people  use television in their homes. For example, television sets may be used for such purposes as playing electronic games and receiving televised information services, documentaries, discussion  or talk shows and all kinds of sports events.  Considering the fact that television  is not only the means of communication let us have an  overview of the  various media of communication.

ii.                  ASSESSMENT OF THE VARIOUS MEDIA :-Radio, Television  magazine, pamphlets, posters, brochures and audio – visual aids  are important media for conveying information simultaneously  to a large population. They easily open the eyes  of  the people to the fact  of mobilization. Radio especially, can reach people and be effectively used in many countries as instrument mobilizing  communication. Television with its sight  and sound characteristics  can create insight which radio cannot. But   Television has its  limitations, its use is hampered by its very cast, only very few rural  folks can afford the luxury of buying sets.

According to Rogers and Shoemaker, less reliance  on mass media channels in less developed nations may be attributed to

Low literacy

Lack of relevance of messages in the mass media channels  that do exist (Op.cit, p.258) An overview of this assessment reveals to us that upon the benefits according  to each of these  media, there are still  loopholes which stop them from doing perfectly the work for they are meant for  considering these loopholes, one  may be tempted to ask what is the future  of television.

iii.        THE FUTURE OF TELEVISION:- The future  of the  television will be one  of the constant and somewhat  unpredictable change. The zapper, the hand-held remote  control or changing the channel for muting the sound or  changing  the channel without leaving the chair  or couch will continue to trouble advertisers  and they will actively explore alternative   media. Another  aspect of television feature is that  it  is too difficult  to predict its technology.

Looming on the horizon are a number of technology systems that will vastly extend the number of choices  viewers will be able  to make their homes. These includes a number of new ways of deliver. The signal  via optic   cables and telephone lines. Other innovations will enlarge and clarify the picture that viewers see.

1.2              STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM:- Television is one of the most persuasive and effective media of the mass  communication, but it has not been accepted in Nigeria as popular medium. This owning to its relatively high costs, irregular electricity supply and  ownership patterns  that have made them the sole preserve of either government of a few wealthy individuals. The people mostly affected are those in the rural areas including Njikoka Local Government Area. Apart from the fact  that they appear to be under- reported, most of them cannot afford the price of television and the few that have one do not often receive the message because of the  irregular power supply.  As a result of this, the rural dwellers resort to the primordial   system of using the town crier to disseminate information. The use of television in mobilizing the  political life of the rural  dwellers have not been achieved because of poverty on the part of the villagers and lack  of sufficient support from Government.

1.3              PURPOSE OF THE STUDY :-To know the extent to which television programmes have gone in mobilizing and persuading voters in the rural areas during election. Since television is mostly  employed by candidates as a means of reaching the people. To know whether television medium has in any way contributed positively to the political life of the people, especially the rural  dwellers. To provide easy  access to developmental information diffusion at the grass root.

We must have that full and unrestricted  access to all facts and ideas.

This  democratic  idea  can only be realized when the citizens are able to receive, internalize  and apply  information  in such a way as can enable  them participate fully in the political process. While  it is the    fundamental  accessible  to the  electorate in a demarcate system, it  is also  necessary that the  target public  is able to take advantage of such information  which will from the  basic ingredient of its political  judgment. The  essence  of information lies  in its ability to reduce or eliminate uncertainty by  eliminating  societal as well as environmental complexities in terms of political evolution. Information seeks to explain  political  issues, tends and phenomenon  of which the recipient  has  hither  to been ascertain  or completely   obvious. Thus, the value of information is determined by the extent to which it has  helped us to gain new knowledge and  insight into issues over which we have been puzzled, thereby, reducing our anxiety or ignorance. It is in this regard that  H. pross (1972; 21- 31) has defined information as “a co-relate of uncertainness”. While it may be impracticable  to generate total mass participation of the electorate in  the  political  process of any policy, it  is  still desirable that a   greater percentage of  the enfranchised  citizenry exercise their   political sights  and obligations by demonstrating what L Mibratt (1996 5;60) call “rotational   activities  such as holding public and party offices”

Transitional  activities  such as attending       political  meetings and spectators  activities such as wearing  party’s sticker, vest and face-cap and finally voting. It  is when individuals are capable of being exposed and  alive to political stimuli transmitted through the mass media such  as radio, television, looks, papers, posters, stricken bill boards etc. That the  political  aspirant  can expect to communicate with them in terms of selling himself and his manifestos in other to achieve mutual understanding   and good will, acceptance and patronage.

And enfranchised  citizenry that  is  illiterate or pauperized to make meaningful use of these media forms will not be expected to participate  in the political process in any  of the categories already mentioned. As  has been stated   by Donotive  and C Olien (1970, 197- 209) with increased  in flow of information into a social system, segments of the population with  highest levels of education often tend to acquire this information at a faster rate than segments with lower levels  of 2:2 education. According to them such a situation will lead to increasing gap in knowledge between these  segments it then  becomes pertinent to ask   if certain mass media  stimuli cannot  be given different and often distorted  inter predations by the different  individual  and groups that  constitute a society that is ethnically  and culturally divergent. And  if the old saying that “knowledge is  power is still relevant” it then means that those segment of the society that are not able to take  advantage of information (which  produces knowledge) with not have  the kind  of power which the well informed and exposed often do enjoy.

M. Robinson  (1975.288) has gone a stop  further by saying that in  cases where recipients may be fairly educated but economically  disadvantage even though  they may develop strong impressions about places,  personalities and over all condition of the country. They  may still be lacking in the sophistication to follow (or care about the specifies   of individual political ) new story. It should be noted that if only a tiny segment  of the Nigeria society i.e. able to make effective demand and use  of information transmitted through the mass media faster than the  rest, there is  a considerable gap in knowledge of political  affairs between it and the largely in active majority.

But according to Oknokwo:   Since  it is the unformatted citizenry that can be asked  to express his opinion always  on contemporary issues of public interest. It becomes  necessary to intensify efforts in providing information education and entertainment to ensure maximum  participation of the populace in social, political  and economic lives of the nation.

1.2              THE REVIEW

From the   above, we can  that information  is very essential  for overall mobilization of those in the rural areas. Since television is seen as the most effective medium of reaching these people and so many of them have not been able to put one but rather depend on  opinion leaders for political  as they  do not  know their political  sights and obligation.

According to Akpan (1987:22)   media information has a tremendous energy for change. Change in this  context refers learning, which manifests in the needed  most in the rural areas where a good  number of the  people are allowing in ignorance. They therefore need media information to improve in all aspects of life. For instance, in  ion to improve  in all aspects  of life. For instance, in political  aspect, they need  media  information to participate fully in elements because through the media, they will fully in elections because  through the media, they  will learn their political rights and obligations. In the economic  aspects, the media will teach  them how to use modern implements  in farming so as to make a good yield.

Akpan (1987:124) does a step further  by stating that television can be very good medium for mobilizing and Educating the people. It can used for the    transmission of knowledge the instillation of values  and  the mobilization of intellectual, physical, social and artistic skills and competence. Its ability to talk, more and be seen makes television very  unique.

Akpan (1987:125)  also sees television as a very  powerful visual aid in teaching   or learning process. According  to him  with television the learner can see demonstrations at close quarter. For instance, the  political  aspirations  carry out their campaigns  in the television.  The candidates  are also seen  television, advertising themselves  with this, people can then decide on whom to vote for television therefore, has the  capacity to pass knowledge thus,  the occurrence of learning.

In this case,  he is trying  to tell us that  television being audio visual could be a good medium for mobilizing  and Educating the  rural  dwellers  on political as  it    makes them  to  see for themselves rather than being told. Emphasizing  more on the need for television  in the  political process.  Gerald  ford, 1976 has this to say

The presidents campaign must be

Television oriented

We must change  the perception

of literarily millions

of voters and this can  only be done

Through the mass media with the

Principle emphasis on television

From  the above, we can understand that  the best medium through which we can carry out campaign  is the television. It is also a good medium for mobilizing   political aspirants  who wish to sell themselves so as to win people over, especially those in  the rural  areas. The writers


The study will help to create an awareness on the need for proper use of  television in political mobilization  of rural areas. It will enable  television procedures to give  equal coverage to  both urban  and rural dwellers it will help to create  a more co-coordinated socio-political  and socio- economic  awareness on some burning  issues  at the grass roots. It  is also hoped  that the  research will help in promoting political participation and national  consciousness. It will ensure continued  education for the rural population.


1.         Are the  people of Nijiokoka Local Government Area exposed to political advertisement and activities

2.         Does  exposure  to television programme affect their  voting pattern

3.         Have television programme been able to create any positive impact on the political    life of the people.

1.6              RESEARCH  HYPOTHESES

The functional   theory that is   mostly related to this  study is the two-step flow hypotheses .

Ho       : The theory  holds the view that  the mass media often transmit ideas directly to opinion  leaders who  formulate opinions and in turn pass some to less interested and more poorly informed  voters.

H1       : T hat much  of the effect of the  mass media were found to be more powerful that had been perniciously  assumed  and also noted that much of  media effect was indirect since they were interrupted  through  interpersonal interaction.

H2    : The  research found that opinion change among those  individual   who engaged  in interpersonal communication that is their voting was more influence by other people  than  by media message.

Ho       :Those individual  who influenced the voters were  labeled  opinion leaders.

H1       :Those opinion leaders rely heavily on media for  political  contents, in contrast tot those voters who rely more on opinion leaders to  make up their minds.

H2       :The researcher  exactly finds, the inhabitants  of Njikoka Local Government Area, majority of who rely on the opinion  leaders for decision – making, both political and otherwise. The regards were highlighted in the concept that was  originally coined by laze field and other  1984 as part of the two- step model whereby they describe the following social characteristics  to opinion leaders.

1.         They occupy positions, which their communities regard as giving them special competence in the matter at  hand

2.         Accessibility to many people

3.         Contact with relevant information coming  from outside their immediate circle.

4.         Opinion  leaders are like to be exposed to the media appropriate, to the sphere in which they lead. The two-step flow hypothesis”, therefore is the  pivot on which this research work is based.


There are some outstanding terms used it is work and  for the purpose of clarity, their definitions are given but where necessary, descriptions  are used in place of definitions.


MOBILIZATION : It can be define as encouraging people  to come  together to pursue common development objectives.

POLITICAL: Is defined as the science or art of Government politics  is not confined to state but can  take  place in other associations and institutions.

RURAL AREA: Are men and women who live in different urbanized communities   of any country in contrast  to the urban people who live in the towns or in a more developed environment.

TELEVISION: Is the method of broadcasting still and  moving picture and  sound over a distance  by means of electrical waves  moving through the air.

Through  television, viewers  can see and learn about people, places and things in far  away lands.


MOBILIZATION :This means to work together in order to achieve a particular aim.

POLITICAL: Art  of Governing  for letter and more  rewarding life

RURAL  AREA: Any  undeveloped area, in this project Njikoka Local Government Area.

TELEVISION: The medium for transmitting mobilizing information /value  for the rural areas.

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