A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF NEWSPAPER COVERAGE OF ELECTRICITY IN NIGERIA

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Product Code: 00005645

No of Pages: 60

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Abstract

Power sector in Nigeria has been one of the challenging sectors for Nigerian development. It has faced challenges ranging from corruption, lack of infrastructure, insufficient power generation, inadequate supply of electricity to consumers, inflexible tariff system, to non-payment of large bill arrears by the power consumers. Despite all these, Nigerians have increasingly demanded for electricity in the country. This study examined newspaper coverage of tariff increase in the power sector to know how the issue was deemed important. The study used agenda-setting theory to buttress and explain the work while content analysis was the research design used to content analyse The Punch and The Nation newspapers for the period of six (6) months. The universe of the study was 366 out of which 192 was the sample size while coding sheet and coding guide were the instruments of data collection. Findings revealed that the selected newspapers did fairly well in their coverage on tariff increase in the power sector. Both newspapers gave prominence and high frequency to the stories reported. The study recommended that since so many people rely on media messages there is need for the print media to be more proactive on the interpretative function of the mass media and that media professionals should not rely solely on media briefings, conferences and press releases from electricity power brokers; they should equally get the opinions of the common man on the street and know what the masses are saying on any issue of importance.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table of contents

page(s)

Abstract

CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION

1.1       Background of the Study

1.2       Statement of the Problem

1.3       Research Objectives

1.4       Research Questions

1.5       Significance of the Study

1.6      Significance of the Study

1.7       Scope of the Study

1.8       Definition of Key Terms

1.9    Organization of the study

 

CHAPTER TWO: REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE

2.1    Conceptual Review

2.1.1 The Power Sector in Nigeria 

2.1.2           Energy resources in Nigeria

2.1.3 Role of Press in Modern Society

2.1.4 Changing Approaches to News

2.1.5 Concept of Newspaper

2.2    Theoretical Framework 

2.3    Empirical Studies

 

CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

3.1    Research design

3.2    Sources of data

3.3    Sampling and Sampling Technique

3.4    Instrumentation

3.5    Data analysis

 

CHAPTER FOUR: DATA PRESENTATION AND DISCUSSION

4.1    Data Presentation and Analysis

4.2    Discussion of Findings

 

CHAPTER FIVE: CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION

5.1    Conclusion 

5.2    Recommendations 

References


 

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1       Background of the Study

One of the major energy challenges in the world today is ensuring access to clean and sustainable energy in developing countries. International Energy Agency IEA (2010) estimated that in 2008 about 1.4 billion people in the world lacked access to electricity of which 587 million were in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Most of these people live in rural areas. The lack of access to electricity poses a significant barrier to achieving the millennium development goals (MDGs). For example, to achieve universal primary education, educational facilities need electricity for teaching aids, good lighting for reading in homes; to reduce child mortality and improve maternal health, health facilities need refrigerators to preserve drugs and vaccines and need electricity for proper lighting for effective service delivery. Studies have shown that there is a high correlation between annual per capita electricity consumption and human development index (Meisen & Akin, 2008). The government of these countries faces the Herculean task of providing access to electricity to improve the living standard of the populace because the availability of electricity stimulates economic activities. The situation is not different in Nigeria. In 2008, about 53% of Nigerians lacked access to electricity (WHO/UNDP, 2009), although at the different geopolitical zones, the situation is significantly different. It has been observed that the lack of electricity access is more severe in the northern parts of Nigeria with the North-East geopolitical zone having 71.6%. Co-incidentally, the North-East geopolitical zone lags behind other zones in other socio-economic indices like literacy level, access to health care, maternal mortality, access to clean water etc (UNFPA, 2008). Given the importance of electricity access to the socio-economic development of a country at micro and macro levels, in August 2010, the Nigerian government set the target of 80% electricity coverage by 2015 in the Roadmap to Power Sector Reforms (Jonathan, 2010). As electricity utility has been privatized, providing electricity for these rural dwellers implies constructing transmission and distribution lines to reach the communities. However, extending the transmission and distribution a line is capital intensive, as such, it is considered only when it is cost-beneficial.

Moreover, most rural communities have dispersed settlement pattern and rural dwellers are low income earners who will need electricity only for basic needs of cooking, lighting, refrigeration, entertainment, and to power small-scale agro-based businesses and other enterprises like soap making, tailoring, hairdressing, weaving etc. Thus extending the grid will lead to low capacity utilization due to low demand. Since private firms are usually driven by profit maximization motives, they may be unwilling to extend the distribution network to these rural communities as it will not be a viable investment. This situation gives rise to the possibility of providing electricity access in some of these rural communities using off-grid electrification. World Bank (2008) notes that off-grid electrification is usually considered when providing electricity access to small rural communities far from the existing gird, with dispersed settlement pattern and are low income earners. Off-grid electrification provides similar benefits as grid extension in terms of enhancing the standard of living and stimulating the creation of micro-enterprises that increase overall economic benefit, although the available power is lower. Foley (1990) lists the gains of off-grid electrification to include pumping of water in the village and farming environment, and provision of electricity for heating, lighting, and cooking which provide the necessities of life to these rural dwellers. Different technical options can be considered in implementing off-grid models e.g. Biomass, Wind, Hydro, Solar Power, or the combination of two technologies (Kerridge et al., 2008). The use of each technology depends on the domestic resources available. Communities close to a river will likely use mini hydroelectric projects, and communities with high solar irradiation will likely use solar energy.

 

1.2       Statement of the Problem

Erratic power supply has remained a major problem in Nigeria which is affecting the socio-economy of the nation. Nigeria is still using out-dated cumbersome machines and systems compared to the trends of new technology. Therefore, the study seeks to look at the problems encountered by nations electricity power supply to various sectors. Also it seeks to assess the reportage of the two national dailies, The Daily Trust and Leadership Newspapers on the issue of power supply on the Nigeria economy, institution of learning and area of health delivery.

 

1.3       Research Objectives

The study has the following objectives:

The following research questions were formulated to guide the study:

(i)                 To examine the types of the stories on electricity tariff increase reported The Punch and The Nation Newspapers.

(ii)               To examine the direction of the stories on electricity tariff increase reported by The Punch and The Nation Newspapers?

(iii)             To examine the frequency of reportage of stories on electricity tariff increase by The Punch and The Nation Newspapers?

(iv)             To examine the prominence given to stories on electricity tariff increase by The Punch and The Nation Newspapers?  

 

1.4       Research Questions

The following research questions were formulated to guide the study:

(v)               What are the types of the stories on electricity tariff increase reported The Punch and The Nation Newspapers?

(vi)             What is the direction of the stories on electricity tariff increase reported by The Punch and The Nation Newspapers?

(vii)           What is the frequency of reportage of stories on electricity tariff increase by The Punch and The Nation Newspapers?

(viii)         What is the prominence given to stories on electricity tariff increase by The Punch and The Nation Newspapers?  

 

1.5       Significance of the Study

Media helps to carry out information to citizens of particular societies; it is also the same function that mass media performs in Nigeria. According to McQuail (2002), mass media is a means of communication that operates on a large scale, reaching and involving virtually everyone in a society to a greater or lesser degree. Mass media especially the print, ‘newspaper’ plays a major role in informing the citizens on the issue of power sector in the country.

The researcher tends to highlight the coverage by newspapers given to national power sector. Mass media especially the print,‘newspaper’ plays a major role in informing the citizens on the issue of power sector in the country.

Mass media as medium of communication has indeed remain one of the platforms of conveying messages across and way of life to relatively large heterogeneous and anonymous readership in Nigeria.

This study is significant to Nigeria society because it will help in making Nigeria mass media to play its role in promoting communication sector, it also unravel the reasons why journalist need to put more emphasis in their work in order to attain the certain objectives.

 

1.7       Scope of the Study

The research work is restricted to the coverage of the impact of electricity on Nigeria economy. It is in the light of this that this study investigated newspaper coverage of electricity tariff increase which covered a period of six (6) months (October 2015-March 2016).

 

1.8       Definition of Key Terms

Newspaper: The newspaper is described as a collection of folded printed sheet of papers published periodically, usually daily or weekly for circulating news.

Coverage: Media attention given to an event or topic by newspapers, radio, and television in their reporting.

Electricity: Physics energy created by moving charged particle, a fundamental form of kinetic or potential energy created by free or controlled movement of charged particles such as electrons, positrons and irons.

Watchdog of the Society: This term refers to the media as a watchdog to the society in the sense that media as the forth realm arm of government which sit in between the public’s and the government as mediator for interference.

Media: This refers to all those media technologies such as television, radio, internet, newspaper, magazine etc. that are intended to reach a large audience by mass communication.


1.9   Organization of the study

The study is divided into five chapters. Chapter one deals with the study’s introduction and gives a background to the study. Chapter two reviews related and relevant literature. The chapter three gives the research methodology while the chapter four gives the study’s analysis and interpretation of data. The study concludes with chapter five which deals on the summary, conclusion and recommendation.



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