Education and Social Development in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, 1976-2002
JULIUS O. UNUMEN
By 1976 there were only a few primary schools in the Abuja area. Due mainly to the Federal Government Universal Primary Education Programme (UBE) that was introduced that year, the FCT Administration inherited 54 primary schools from the various State Governments from which the territory was excised when it took over the administration of the territory in 1980.1 Up to 1979, there was no post primary school or any territory educational institution in the FCT. It is not surprising, therefore, because of the lack of educational facilities in the territory, that the level of educational attainment in the territory was very low by 1976. About 80 percent of the population had no western education and therefore, could neither read nor write. Indeed, only about 16 percent read up to primary school level. A negligible one percent of the population had secondary education w hile 0.1 percent had University education (Mabogunje and Abumere, 1984). This will make one to agree with Abumere that the educational level, no matter how measured, was very low in the FCT, Abuja, by 1976.2
In the health sector, modern facilities worth the name did not exist in the FCT, Abuja by 1976. In the entire territory, there w as no hospital, clinic or maternity (private or government). There was also no evidence of a registered chemist or patent medicine store in the territory. The modern health services by 1976 consisted of eight inadequately equipped, poorly staffed, poorly managed and unevenly located dispensaries and leprosy clinics. The few clinics were established and managed by local councils. Each of the eight dispensaries usually had two staff made up of a Rural Health Assistant and an Attendant. Where a leprosy clinic was attached to the dispensaries a leprosy assistant was added.3
Only minor ailments and dressings could be treated in the dispensaries. Major cases were referred to very far away general hospitals in Suleja, Koto Karfe, Keffi and Nassarawa. Understandably, because of the distance, sometimes the patients never survived the rigour of travelling to the neighbouring towns for treatment. The people therefore tended to rely more on traditional healers or go without any form of treatment at all.4
It is also important to emphasize that the few available dispensaries were unevenly distributed. The dispensaries were as a rule, located at the district headquarters at Kwali, Gawu, Bwari, Kuje, Abaji, and Karshi. The district headquarters, it must be noted, were not the centres of highest population neither were they centrally located within the districts. Consequently, settlements with the highest concentration of people did not have any health facility at all. Settlements such as Gwagwalada, Izom, Yebu, Garki and Kau which had the highest population did not have any form of health facilities at all. Moreover, many settlements including Kwaku, Gomari and Kau which were isolated and inaccessible, particularly during the rainy season, were completely cut off from the available health services. For an area that had several cases of communicable and water borne diseases by 1976, the health situation was extremely bad due mainly to lack of adequate modern health facilities.5
From 1980 to 1996 the FCT Administration consistently opened new primary and post-primary schools every year. Between 1980 and 1985, for example, the number of primary schools in the FCT increased from 54 to 210. By 1989, the figure had risen to 216.6 By the end of 2002, there were 285 public primary schools in the FCT, Abuja.7 Early beneficiaries were children of the indigenous people. According to Filaba, to encourage education among the indigenous people, their children were given scholarships for post primary school ed ucation. Government primary and secondary schools within the FCT were free.8
There was a tremendous growth in primary school enrolment in the territory. In 1981 primary school enrolment in the territory was 17,943 made up of 10,048 males and 7,895 females. By 1985, primary school enrolment figure rose to 45,155 made up of 25,287 males 19,868 females. In 1990, the primary school enrolment in the territory was 64,974 made up of 37,693 males and 27,281 females. In 1996, the enrolment figure rose to 108,703 made up of 59, 309 males and 49,394 females.9 Table 1 below shows the steady growth in enrolment in primary schools in the FCT, Abuja.
Primary School Enrolment in the FCT
Source: IBC, Abuja Handbook Incorporating Yellow Pages , Lagos, 1998, P.71.
By the end of 2002, primary school enrolment figure for public primary schools in the FCT was about 267,517 made up of 138,712 males and 128,805 females.10
Changes in Primary School Enrolment 1989-1995
|Area||Share of Enrolment||Growth Rate %|
Source: Ukwu I. Ukwu. “Location of Markets and Other Commercial Facilities”, M.S.U. Kalgo. and Olatubosun Ayileka (eds.), The Review of Abuja Master Plan, 2001, p. 89.
Table 2 above shows differences in percentage growth rates in primary school enrolment amongst the Councils between 1989 and 1999 in the FCT, Abuja. Within the period, primary school enrolment increased remarkably by 74.8 per cent in the territory. However Kuje Area Council had the highest growth rate of 113.1 per cent followed by Abaji Area Council with 92.6 per cent. Gwagwalada Area Council had 88.4 growth rate within the same period. The lowest growth rate was experienced in the Municipal Area Council with 46.3 per cent. These facts further reinforce the popularity of education and the steady growth in enrolment across the territory.
With regard to post-primary education, there was a phenomenal growth in both institutions and enrolment figures within the period under consideration. The first sets of secondary schools were established in the FCT, Abuja by the FCT Administration in 1980. They were Government Science Secondary School (GSSS), Abaji; Government Secondary
School (GSS) Bwari; Government Secondary School (GSS), Gwagwalada; Government Secondary School (GSS), Karshi and Government Secondary School (GSS) Rubochi.11 The first sets of secondary schools in the FCT were located in the Development Area Headquarters. By 1984, there were 31 secondary schools in the territory. The secondary school figures rose to 34 in 1996 and 40 in 2002.12 Table 3 below details postprimary schools and the year they were established in the FCT, Abuja.
Post primary school enrolment also witnessed a remarkable increase within the period under consideration. In 1981, post primary school enrolment in the FCT was a mere 335 made up of 201 males and 134 females. The enrolment figure increased remarkably to 9,965 in 1985. The post primary school enrolment figure further increased dramatically to 20,180 in 1989. By 1990 the enrolment was 27,266 made up of 17,420 males and 9,836 females. By 1996, the post-primary school enrolment figure had increased to 43,749 made up of 24,506 males and 19,243 females (See table 4 ).
Post Primary Schools in the FCT
|S/No||Name of School||Year Founded|
|1||Government Science Secondary school, Abaji||1980|
|2||Government Secondary School, Bwari||1980|
|3||Government Secondary School, Gwagwalada||1980|
|4||Government Secondary School, Karshi||1980|
|5||Government Secondary School, Rubochi||1980|
|6||Government Girls Science Secondary School, (Formerly Women Teachers College Kuje).||Kuje||1980|
|7||Government Girls Science Secondary School, Dutse||1981|
|8||Government Teachers College, Zuba||1981|
|9||Government Secondary School, Kuje||1981|
|10||Government Secondary School, Kwali||1981|
|11||Federal Government College, Kwali||1981|
|12||Government Girls Secondary School, Abaji||1981/82|
|13||Government Secondary School, Karu||1983|
|14||Government Secondary School, Yaba||1983|
|15||Federal Government Girls, College, Bwari||1984|
|16||Government Secondary School, Gwarimpa (formerly FCC Secondary School, Karu Annex)||1984|
|17||Government Day Secondary School, Gwagwalada||1985|
|18||Government Secondary School, Dangara||1985|
|S/No||Name of School||Year Founded|
|19||Government Junior Secondary School, Yangoji||1985|
|20||Government Junior Secondary School, Dobi||1985|
|21||Government Junior Secondary School, Gwagwalada||1985|
|22||Government Secondary School, Nyanya||1985|
|23||Government Secondary School, Jiwa||1985|
|24||Government Secondary School, Tungan Maje||1985|
|25||Government Secondary School , Airport||1986|
|26||Government Secondary School, Garki||1987|
|27||Government Secondary School, Wuse||1987|
|28||Government Secondary School, Tudun Wada||1987|
|29||Federal Technical College, Orozo||1987|
|30||Government Secondary School, Kubwa||1989|
|31||University of Abuja||1988|
|32||Government Junior Secondary School, Shere||1991|
|33||Government Junior Secondary School, Yebu||1991|
|34||Army Day Secondary School, Sani Abacha Barrack, Asokoro||1992|
|35||Model Secondary School, Maitaima||1993|
|36||Government Secondary School, Pyakasa||1993|
|37||Government Gifted and Conventional Secondary School Gwagwalada||1994|
|38||Government Junior Secondary School, Bandagi||1996|
|39||Government Science Secondary School, Abaji||1996|
Source: IBC, Abuja Handbook Incorporating Yellow Pages, Lagos, 1998, pp.73-77.
Post Primary School Enrolment in the FCT
Source: IBC, Abuja Handbook Incorporating Yellow Pages, Lagos, 1998, p.72
The remarkable drop in post primary school enrolment figures in 1991 for males and 1992 for females can be attributed to the effect of relocation of some indigenous communities outside the FCT within the period. The increase from 1993 was due to the fact that the civil servants compulsorily moved to Abuja in late 1991 as settled and some moved their children to the FCT.
It is pertinent to note that of the 40 public post primary schools in the FCT, the vast majority were established and controlled by the FCT Administration. There were six Federal Government Colleges in the territory. Two out of the postprimary schools were technical colleges while one was a teacher training college. In addition to the public primary and post primary schools, there were a number of privately owned schools.
Government set the pace and initially dominated the development of education at the primary and secondary schools levels. Thereafter, the private sector contributed to the growth of education in the territory. There were a number of privately owned nursery, primary and secondary schools in Abuja in the 1980s and 1990s. The FCT administration accredited only a handful of them because many were of low standard. The private schools were mostly owned by private individuals, Christian and Muslim missions and other bodies. These privately owned schools contributed to the educational d evelopment in the territory by complementing w hat government did. Table 5 below shows a list of some accredited private schools in Abuja by 1998.
Accredited Private Institutions in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, by 1997
|1.||Agape Standard School||Gwagwalada|
|2.||Agura Hotel Catering Schol||Agura Hotel, Garki.|
|3.||All Saints Anglican Primary School||Behind Federal Ministry of
Foreign Affairs, Wuse
|4.||All Saints Anglican Nursery. School||All Saints Church, Wuse|
|5.||American International School||Maitama|
|6.||ARWA Nursery School, Jabi||Jabi, Abuja.|
|7.||Bostar Computer Institute||Area II, Garki.|
|8.||Christ the King College||Gwagwalada|
|9.||City Commercial School||Nyanya|
- Community Nursery and Primary School Asokoro
|11.||Day by Day Private Nursery School||Kubwa|
|12.||De-Kapital Nursery/Primary School||Bwari|
|13.||ECWA Bible Training School||Old Kura|
|14.||Faith Nursery/Primary School||Gwagwalada|
|15.||Finah Nursery & Primary School||Wuse Area Council|
- Florence Ade Akodu International School Maitama (Opp. Minister Hill)
- German Sch. (Pre-Pri. Junior & Sec. Sch.
- Handmaids Intern. Nurs. and Pri. Sch. Area 3, Garki
- Holy Family Nursery & Primary School Kuje
- International Institute of Journalism (IIJ) Area II, Garki.
- Islamiyya Primary School Gwagwalada
- Jolatsen Nursery/Primary School Gwagwalada
- Jolatsery Nursery Day Care Centre Dagiri, Gwagwalada
- Madonna Inter. Nursery School Gwagwalada, Phase 3
- Missionaries of St. Paul’s Seminary Gwagwalada
- Napo Private School Maitama
- National Institute of Secretaries and
- NERDC Staff School Sheda
- New Capital Nursery & Primary School Asokoro District
- Olumawu Nursery/Primary School Wuse II
- Ozuke Day Care Nursery/Primary Sch. Kubwa Village
- Regina Pacis Girls School Nyanya
- Paul’s Nursery School Nyanya Nyanya
- Simon & Jude Seminary Kuje Kuje
- Star International Nursery/Primary Gwagwalada
- System Education Centre Durumi
- The National Missionary Seminary
of St. Paul Gwagwalada
- The Redeemer Nursery/Primary Old Karu Village
- Tophill Nursery/Private School Wuse, Zone 6
- United Nursery/Primary School Idu/Karmo
Source: Source: IBC, Abuja Handbook Incorporating Yellow Pages, Lagos, 1998, pp. 77-79.
In addition to primary and post primary education, tertiary institutions were also established in the FCT within the period from the 1980s. By 2002, there were two tertiary educational institutions in the FCT. The first of them was the University of Abuja in 1989. The University of Abuja was established, among other stated objectives, to provide quality higher education for the people of the FCT, Abuja and the surrounding areas. The hope w as that the university w ould contribute to the enhancement of the intellectual, social and economic character of the territory and the entire nation.
In order to take care of the higher educational needs of the growing number of civil servants in the territory, who might want to combine the pursuit of higher education without necessarily resigning from their employment, the university was mandated by the law establishing it to provide dual services namely, regular university education and “off campus” or distance learning services. The University of Abuja thus became the first university in the country so mandated by the law establishing it.13 Between 1989 and 2002 the university provided instruction in Arts, Sciences, Social Sciences, Management Sciences, Education as well as Law.
The second tertiary institution established in Abuja was the FCT College of Education, Gwagwalada. The college of education was established in 1997 for the training of teachers for the primary and junior secondary schools as well as for the training of “existing uncertified teachers” in the territory in order to provide better educational services in the FCT and the surrounding areas.14 From 1997 to 2002, the FCT College of Education contributed to the training of qualified teachers for the primary and post primary levels.
In order to enhance literacy among adults who did not attend the regular schools or dropped out of schools, adult education programmes were incorporated into the educational system. In 1989, for instance, there were 152 adult literacy classes in different parts of the territory. The enrolment figure in the Adult Education or “literacy classes” was 3,337 in 1989. Between 1985 and 1988, 1,500 adult learners graduated from the various centres. Students in the Adult Education centres were taught how to read and write as well as work elementary arithmetic.15
To enhance literacy among women, women centres were established in different parts of the territory. The centres emphasised home economics, crafts, food processing and elementary business studies etc. The first centre was established in Garki in 1992. Three additional women centres were subsequently equipped and commissioned in Karu, Abaji and Jiwa settlements. The aim of the centres was to train young female school leavers, married women, and make their lives meaningful economically and socially. The centres offered courses in weaving, sewing, cookery, mat making, typing and secretariat duties.
Similarly, in order to enhance literacy among the nomadic Fulani cattle herdsmen in the territory, nomadic education programme was introduced. The content of the nomadic education programme was on how to read and write as well as how to take proper care of animals.16
Development in education at all levels in the territory had significant impact on the level of literacy. By 1976, the literacy rate in the territory was less than twenty percent. By 1991, the literacy level had risen to 56.4 percent of the population aged 6 years and above. The FCT literacy level in 1991 was the same as the national average.17 This represented a remarkable improvement in the literacy level within a period of less than 15 years. Table 5 below shows literacy rates in Nigeria by States in 1991 while table 6 details age specific literacy rate by sexes in the territory by 1991.
Literacy Rate in Nigeria in 1991 by States
Source: NPC, “1991 Population Census”, 1998, pp. 130-132.
Age Specific Literacy Rate for Both Sexes in the FCT, Abuja by 1991
|Age Group||Population||Literate Population||Literacy|
|50 and above||22,479||4,085||18.2|
Source: NPC, “1991 Population Census”, 1998, p. 132
Table 6 above shows that by 1991, literacy rate was highest among people of ages 15-17 with 73.3 per cent followed by 10-14 and 20-29 w ith 69.2 per cent and 65.9 per cent respectively. People of age 50 and above had the lowest literacy rate of 18.2 per cent. These facts reinforce the impact of educational development on literacy in the territory. While high literacy rate among people of age’s 10-49 show how popular education had become in the territory, especially from 1980, low literacy for people of age 50 and above is an indication of the low literacy level before development commenced in the territory in 1980.
There is no doubt that by 2002, there was a remarkable improvement on the literacy level over the 1991 figures. This is tenable because immediately after the 1991 census, over 200,000 civil servants and their families moved into the FCT with their culture of western education.18 Other indicators that can be used to establish a rise in literacy level within this period include the growth in enrolment figures at the primary and secondary school levels as well as efforts at promoting adult education and nomadic education.
The correlation between education and social change is significant. Commenting on the ability of literacy to galvanise social changes, Alao argued that literacy and social change are inseparable as an attempt to separate one from the other could be likened to separating a man from his shadow. In his view,
One cannot talk of social change first and literacy later or literacy first and social change later. The two go simultaneously in a criss-cross relationship with one reinforcing the other … literacy is the pivot upon which social change revolves.19
The ability of literacy to galvanise change is enhanced by, among other things, its ability to remove passiveness and ignorance as well as to make people “more flexible to change”.20
Development of education at all levels including adult literacy of women and nomads and the resultant increase in the level of literacy changed the social and intellectual character of the entire people. On their educational attainment and the fact that they were engaged in the modern sector of the economy, they espoused western culture and ways of life. They also became largely freed from the restraints of tradition and indigenous political authorities.
Whereas in 1976 almost all the inhabitants of the FCT were engaged in agriculture, educational development within the period under consideration changed the occupational structure of the population. According to the 1991 National Population Census, only 29.1 percent of FCT population were engaged in agriculture compared with the over 80 per cent in 1976. Similarly, by 1976 only 3.5 percent of the population comprised mostly of teachers in the few primary schools and a few local authorities staff were engaged in wage employment in the territory. However, by 1991 47.1 percent of the FCT population was engaged in wage employment. Out of this, 10.3 percent were employed in professional technical and related work, 7.6 percent were in administrative, managerial and related work, 5.9 percent were in engaged in clerical and related work and 12.3 percent were engaged in sales work. Tables 7 and 8 below give more details.
Distribution of Economically Active Population by Occupation (Both Sexes) in the FCT, Abuja in 1991
|% of population
Managerial & related workers
|Services workers||Agric and related workers||Production related workers||&||Occupatio|
Distribution of Agricultural Labour in the FCT, Abuja by Sex in 1991
|* Total population in working Age Group||259,520|
|* Total Agric Population||35,543|
|* Percentage of population in agric production||13.7|
|* Male population in Agric||32.245|
|* Female population in Agric||3,298|
|* Male as percentage of Agric population||90.7|
|* Female as percentage of Agric population||9.3|
* Agric Population as percentage of Total agric population in Nigeria 12.8
* Male Agric Population as percentage of Total agric population in Nigeria 26.7
* Female Agric Population as percentage of Total agric population in Nigeria 2.1
Source: NPC, “1991 Population Census”, 1998 p 182.
Thus the development of western education contributed to human capital development, which in turn, altered the social and intellectual character as well as the employment structure of the population in the FCT.
Western education contributed significantly to the human capital development in the territory. Within the period under consideration many people in the territory became employed in different type of work of the Federal Government Ministries, Parastatals, Departments and Agencies. Other sectors that provided wage employment opportunities in the territory were MFCT, FCDA and their various agencies. Filaba has argued that most of the teachers in the FCT primary and post primary schools within the period under consideration were the indigenous people. They also dominated welfare and health departments of FCDA and MFCT. In 2002, for instance, of the total strength of 1,757 for MFCT and 11,306 for FCDA, 160 and 1,105 respectively were indigenes of FCT.21
There were other opportunities for wage employment in the FCT. These included the private sector participation in the economy. With western education and other forms of training, the rural people were better able to understand and apply agricultural information and innovation such as the application of fertilizers, insecticides and pesticides, pest control methods operation of agricultural implements etc. This in turn led to improved contributions of the individual to his society.
Again, with education farmers were better able to allocate limited resources in ord er to maximise profits. More importantly, perhaps, with the ability to read and write, farmers in general and women in particular in the rural areas gained dignity, self respect and a sense of belonging thus eliminating the feeling of alienation that illiterates experienced when they came in contact with educated urban dwellers. By giving the farmers a sense of belonging, education contributed to social cohesion by ensuring that the “rural and urban social system” became “horizontally integrated”.22
Development in Healthcare Delivery
Between 1980 and 2002 improvements were recorded in the establishment of modern health institutions in Abuja. From 1980, the FCT Administration and private bodies embarked on the establishment of modern health establishments including hospitals, clinics, health centres, maternity homes and dispensaries.
Garki Hospital was the first major health institution that was established in the FCT. It started in Suleja as staff clinic for FCDA. Following the movement of FCDA staff from Suleja to the FCC from 1982, the clinic was relocated to Garki and upgraded to the status of a health centre. By 1986, it had become a full-fledged hospital and was renamed Garki Hospital.23 The hospital offered primary and secondary health services including specialist services in surgery paediatrics, obstetrics and gynaecology to mostly residents of the FCC. By 1989, in addition to Garki Hospital there were three rural health centres, nine health centres, and eighteen dispensaries in different parts of the territory.24
By 1992, consid erable progress w as mad e in the establishment of health establishments in the FCT. In addition to Garki Hospital, a specialist hospital was established at Gwagwalada by the Federal Government. Other hospitals in the FCT by 1992 were Kubwa Hospital, Rubochi Hospital, Wuse Hospital, Gwarinpa Hospital and Karshi Hospital.25 Tables 9 and 10 below give details of hospitals in the FCT, ownership and year of establishment.
Number of Health Institutions in the Federal Capital Territory/FCC by
Type, Location and Local Government Areas by 1988
|1||Municipal||1||2 – under construction||1 (life camp)||1||–|
|2||Gwagwalada||1 -under construction||–||1||–||–|
Source: UBO INT LTD, Giant Strides, Oct 198 7- Sept 1988, vol.1.
Some Health Institutions in the FCT and Year Established
Source: IBC, Abuja Handbook Incorporating Yellow Pages, 1998, p. 82 ; Julius Berger Plc., Abuja The City, Abuja, 2006.
In addition to government health institutions, private bodies established health institutions in the FCT within the period under consideration. For example, by 2002 of the 248health institution in the Municipal Area Council, one was a tertiary institution (the National Hospital, Garki), eight were secondary health institutions (General Hospitals), 35 were primary health institutions (health clinics) and 204 were private health establishments.26 The private hospitals in the FCT provided a wide range of specialised services such as ultrasound services, scanning, x-ray, diagnostics, laboratory, ophthalmology, maternity care, fertility services and reproductive health services.
Thus by 2002, there were different categories of health institutions in the FCT. These included two referral or tertiary health institutions namely, the National Hospital located at Garki District within the metropolitan area of the FCC and Gwagwalada Specialist Hospital. In addition, there were secondary health establishments (General Hospitals) and primary health institutions. The primary health establishments included the health clinic, health centres, maternity homes, dispensaries and the private health centres.
By 2002, there were not less than 476-health institutions in the FCT. 248 of them were located within the Municipal Area Council, 27 in Abaji Area Council, 73 in Bwari Area Council,
45 in Kuje Area Council, 31 in Kwali Area Council and 52 in Gwagwalada Area Council. The preponderance of health institutions in the Municipal Area Council can be explained by the fact that the Metropolitan area of the FCC, which formed the focus of development in the FCC within the period under consideration, was part of the council.
The Federal Government owned the tertiary health institutions in the FCT while the General Hospitals or Secondary Health Establishments were owned and managed by the FCT Administration. On the other hand, the dispensaries were established and managed by the different Area Council Administrations. It is also important to note that though there was a preponderance of health institutions in the Municipal Area Council, it is possible to argue that there was distribution of health institutions among the different Area Councils. Table 11 below summarizes FCDA hospital returns in the territory by 1997, giving indications of their high patronage.
Summary of FCDA Hospital Returns (Jan-Nov, 1997)
|S/No||Hospitals||No of Out-Patient Cases||Admissions||Deaths|
Source: MFCT, “1997 Annual Progress Report”, March, Abuja, 1998, p.36.
Added to the establishment of health institutions was capacity building in the health sector. Within the period under consideration, there was recruitment, training and retraining of health professionals to manage and run the health care delivery programmes in the territory. In August 1996 for instance, 122 “health professionals” were employed by the FCT Administration to improve the “efficiency and professionalism of medical personnel”.
In 1996, eight medical doctors were sponsored for postgraduate fellowships at the National Post-Graduate Medical College in different specialities. During the same period, the FCT Administration trained ten senior health officials as community health officers. In addition, some officers of the health department were sponsored by the FCT Health department for training in health planning while others were sponsored for postgraduate training in computer science in ord er to improve on d ata management in the health institutions.27 Tables 12 and 13 below, show health manpower by division in Government hospitals in the FCT by 1997.
Health Manpower by Division (As At 31st December, 1997)
|Nurses/Midwives/Nur se Tutors etc.||642||9|
|6||Med. Lab Scientists||11||11|
|11||Nev.. Health Officers||10|
|14||Health O.I Officers||3|
|18||Medical Rec. Offices||16|
Source: MFCT, “1997 Annual Progress Report”, March, 1998, Abuja.
Medical Personnel in the FCT between 1985 and 1991
Source: MFCT, “Achievement of MFCT, 1985 to 1992”, Efua Media Association Ltd., Lagos, 1992 p.43.
In order to enhance effective and efficient services in nursing and midwifery as an aspect of health care delivery in the territory, the FCT Administration established a School of Nursing and Midwifery at Gwagwalada. The performance of the school in the nursing and mid w ifery professional examinations (see Table 14 and 15) can be seen as an indication of the value the graduates of the school added to quality health care delivery in the territory.
School of Nursing (NMCN) Results
Source: IBC, Abuja Handbook Incorporating Yellow Pages, Lagos, 1998, p. 92.
School of Midwifery (NMCN) Result
Source: IBC, Abuja Handbook Incorporating Yellow Pages, Lagos, 1998, p.93.
Preventive health care was another aspect of health care services in the FCT. Considerable attention was accorded the implementation of the nation wide Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) and Oral Rehydration Therapy (ORT) in the territory. By 1996, for instance, a total of 106,411 children under two years of age were immunised against the six most deadly childhood diseases in different parts of the territory. In 1995 alone, a total of 125,952 children benefited from the EPI programme in the territory. Besides, by 1996, 54,675 people in the territory were vaccinated against yellow fever and 84,933 against cerebral-spinal meningitis.28 (See table 16 below).
NPI Activities in FCT: 1993-1997
|Number of Doses Administered|
Source : “Abuja Handbook”, P.94.
Similarly, pursuant to the FCT Ad ministration’s commitment to the reduction of infant mortality rate, efforts were made to eliminate diarrhoea, which constituted one of the major causes of death of children below the age of five. To achieve this objective, Oral Rehydration Therapy (ORT) centres were established in both public and private hospitals in the territory. By 1997, there were 126 Oral Rehydration Therapy (ORT) centres in both government and private health establishments in the FCT.29
Remarkable efforts w ere also mad e to eliminate communicable diseases in the FCT between 1980 and 2002. To rid the territory of the scourge of tuberculosis and leprosy, the FCT Administration in collaboration with Leprosy Mission International embarked on a “case and search treatment” programme in the FCT during the 1990s. In this programme search was carried out to detect and treat cases of leprosy and tuberculosis in all parts of the territory.
As a result of the programme, in 1995 alone 65 new leprosy cases were discovered and treated. By the end of 1995 a total of 472 leprosy cases were successfully treated in the territory. In the same vein, considerable attention was paid to the eradication of the menace of guinea worm in the territory. In 1988, for instance, 1405 cases of guinea worm were successfully treated. In 1989, 779 cases were successfully treated while 736 cases were successfully treated in 1990. Similarly, in 1991, 194 guinea worm cases were treated in the FCT.30 Table 17 below show details of cases treated in different years between 1986 and 1991.
Disease Control in the FCT
Source: MFCT (1992). “Achievement of MFCT “, p. 44.
In addition to the health institutions that were fairly spread across the territory mobile health services outreach programme was incorporated into the health care system in order to ensure health coverage of the entire territory. Mobile health services provided health care services in the remote rural areas of the territory where qualified medical personnel were lacking.
Another important aspect of public health services in the FCT was enlightenment programme. As part of efforts to control and prevent diseases in the territory the FCT Health Department incorporated enlightenment campaigns into its services. Health enlightenment programmes were aimed at educating the residents, especially the relatively less educated people in the rural areas, of the benefits of healthy living. Other aspects of health education incorporated into the health campaigns include encouraging exclusive breast-feeding for nursing mothers, the importance and need to immunize children, the benefit of family planning methods as well as how to prevent and control HIV/ AIDS.
In addition to the efforts of government, private health practitioners were involved in promotion of public health in the FCT. It has been explained that in addition to their regular and normal medical services some of the private health institutions were involved in such public health activities as the EPI, control of Diarrhoea, ORT and the Baby Friendly
Thus, it is possible to argue that between 1976 and 2002 the health status of the people in FCT, Abuja improved significantly. With tw o w ell-equipped tertiary health institutions, namely the National H ospital, Garki and Gwagwalada Specialist Hospital, a good number of general hospitals, health clinics, maternity homes and numerous dispensaries spread all across the territory, the health care delivery could be said to have experienced growth between 1976 and 2002. It has been explained that by 2002 FCT, Abuja residents had access to “health care services within 40 minutes walking distance on the average” .32
Again, concerted efforts were made to eliminate both communicable and non-communicable diseases in the territory within the period under review. In addition, public health was promoted through immunisation, OHR, enlightenment and counselling. By 2002, life expectancy in the FCT was adjudged to be 52 years on the average for both men and women.
Urbanization and Social Change
Another development that contributed to social change in Abuja was the rapid rate of urbanisation, which gave rise to the situation in which people of diverse culture and belief came to live together in the same area. There is the argument that
Abuja has perhaps the highest rate of urbanization in Nigeria.33 The urban community unlike the traditional ones was heterogeneous in the sense that the different people resident in it did not have the same culture. This situation reduced the degree of social cohesion and co-operation. The authority and influence of traditional rulers such as village heads, community heads and representatives of the Emir of Suleja could not be backed by traditional method of sanctioning disobedience. In such a situation, traditional laws, customs and values became difficult to impose and enforce.
Ikporukpo has argued that urbanization is both a process and a way of life. The argument is that city dwellers, even those who migrated from rural areas, usually imbibe a way of life different from that in the rural areas. In addition to attitude to life, urban peoples’ aspiration and value system differ from that of the rural areas. In the FCT, Abuja, rapid population growth and high rate of urbanization were accompanied by many social problems that were hitherto alien to the indigenous society. These include prostitution, destitution, begging, street hawking, homelessness, congestions and criminality.34
The urban environment brought about a situation in which the wealthy members of the society imbibed modernisation and western culture. The affluent members of the society including international development workers, diplomats, top corporate executives and government functionaries who lived in areas such as Asokoro, Maitama, Wuse II and Garki were associated with Western or modern culture and modern religions namely, Christianity and Islam. The immigrants introduced modern ways of living looked down on the indigenous culture.35 The pervading urban culture and the accompanying affluence gave the indigenous young men and women a feeling of not belonging, harassed, despised and intimidated. Je’adayibe has argued that the indigenous culture and religion were often perceived as part of the “aberration of the city” of Abuja.36 It was this situation that partly accounted for why the educated young men and women abandoned and in some cases, despised the indigenous culture and religion.
The decision of the Federal Government of Nigeria to relocate the country’s capital from Lagos to Abuja resulted in educational and social development not only in the Federal Capital City (FCC) but also in the rest of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). There was development in education, health care and urbanization. Changes took place in the social character of the population, pattern of “congregation and cohesion”, occupational structure, literacy level, life expectancy, “spatial order” as well as the traditional culture and aspects of the traditional value system. In addition, Christianity and Islam became the predominant religions among the settlers.
The development of Western education and the resultant rise in literary rate constituted a significant contribution to human capital development. Education contributed to the development in the FCT in several ways. A rise in literary rate enhanced the quality of people in terms of knowledge, skills, expertise that guaranteed their employability. Thus, there was a positive correlation between educational development and economic productivity of the people.
The manifestations of underdevelopment in the FCT, Abuja area by 1976 were poverty, illiteracy, ill health as well as village settlement pattern. These “frontiers” were meaningfully confronted within the period under consideration. As a consequence of the transformations in agriculture, commerce and industry as well as the considerable development of the educational and health care sectors, the pervading poverty in the territory was reduced.
- International Biographical Center (IBC), A buja Handbook
Incorporating Yellow Pages, Lagos, 1998, p.65.
- L. Mabogunje and S. I. Abumere, “Report on Present and Future Population of the FCT”, prepared on behalf of University of Ibadan Consultancy Services, Ibadan, 1984, p.14.
- Ahmadu Bello University Institute of Administration (ABUIA), “First Report on the Establishment of a Unified System of Administration for the FCT”, Zaria, 1979, pp. 56 – 57.
- Ahmadu Bellow University Institute of Administration (ABUIA), “First Report”, p. 57.
- Ahmadu Bello University Institute of Administration (ABUIA), “First Report”, p. 57.
- International Biographical Center (IBC), Abuja Handbook, p.71.
- Ministry of Federal Capital Territory (MFCT), “Federal Capital Territory 2002 Statistical Year Book”, Abuja, 2002, pp.111 – 116.
- Aruwa Mailafiya Filaba, “Empowerment of Indigenous Women in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Nigeria”, Journal of Education and Science 2007, pp. 104 – 111.
- IBC, Abuja Handbook, p. 71;
- MFCT, “Federal Capital Territory 2002”, pp. 111 -116.
- IBC, Abuja Handbook, p. 73.
- IBC, Abuja Handbook, pp. 73 – 77; MFCT, pp.111 – 116.
- University of Abuja, “About US, Internet Download, http://www.uniabuja.com/ collegeweb/ about.htm, (n.p..) download 18/ 6/ 2006.
- MFCT, “FCT College of Education”, Internet Download, http://www.fct.gon.ng/ mandate + secretariate/ education/ college + Education/ (n.d), (n.p.) downloaded 18/ 6/ 2006.
- Federal Government Printers, Four Years of the Babangida Administration: Achievements and Projects, August 1989, p. 85.
- Ministry of Federal Capital Territory (MFCT), Abuja, Achievements of the Ministry of Federal Capital Territory 1985 – 1992, Efua Media Associates Ltd., Lagos, 1992, p. 47.
- National Population Commission (NPC), “1991 Population Censusof the Federal Republic of Nigeria: Analytical Report at the National Level”, April 1998, p. 132.
- Julius Otaigbe Unumen, “Socio-Economic changes in Abuja, FederalCapital Territory of Nigeria: 1976 – 2002”, Ph.D Thesis, Department of History and International Studies, Faculty of Arts, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State, May 2009, p. 171.
- D. Alao, “Literacy: A Tool for Sociol Charge and EconomicRecovery”, Education Today, vol. 3, no. 3, June 1990, p. 23.
- Alao, “Literary: A Tool”, p. 24.
- MFCT, “Federal Capital Territory Statistical Year Book”, pp. 46 –49.
- S Idachaba et al., Rural Infrastructure in Nigeria, Published for the Federal Department of Rural Development by University of Ibadan Press, 1985, p. 8.
- IBC, Abuja Handbook, p. 81.
- I Abumere, “The New Federal Capital Territory: Regional
Development and Planning”, Tekena N. Tamuno and J. A. Atanda (eds.), Nigeria Since Independence: Government and Policy, Heinemann Educational Book Nigeria limited, Ibadan, 1989, p. 268.
- IBC, Abuja Handbook, p. 82
- Figures Obtained from Education Department, FCDA, Abuja, 2006.
- IBC, Abuja Handbook, p. 91.
- IBC, Abuja Handbook, p. 94.
- IBC, Abuja Handbook, p. 100.
- MFCT, “Abuja Achievement of the Ministry”, p. 44.
- IBC, Abuja Handbook, p. 102.
- Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), Federal Capital Territory Economic Empowerment Programme, 1st Edition, Abuja 2005, p. 18.
- For details, see A.I. Okoduwa and Julius Otaigbe Unumen,“Emergence of Urban Areas in Abuja, Federal Capital Territory of Nigeria, 1976-2002”, Development Studies Review, no1, April 2010.
- Chris, O. Ikporukpo, “The Siege on Nigerian Towns: Reflection onRural – Urban Migration”, Annals of the Social Science Council of Nigeria, no, 2, Jan – Dec., pp. 23 – 29.
- Amali Joseph Shekwo and Aruwa Maifiya Filaba, “The Decliningand Beleagned Gbagyi Nation and Culture”, Gbagyi Journal, vol. 1, no. 2, p. 29.
- Dogara Gwamna, Je Adayibe, “The Gbagyi at Crossroads: A
Commentary”, Gbagyi Journal, vol. 1, no. 2, p. 3.