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Over the years, Ideato North Local Government Area of Imo state has been experiencing a slow rate of development in the area. Based on this therefore, this work was designed toinvestigate the socio-economic and cultural factors militating against rural development in Ideato North Local Government Area. Two hundred respondents were randomly selected and used. Questionnaire was the instrument used for data collection. The data collected were analysed using SPSS and chi-square, tables, charts and percentages were used to present the results. Several findings were made as regards socio-economic and cultural factors militating against rural development in Ideato North LGA. One major factor is that Ideato people are facing total neglect from the government which goes a long way in affecting their development negatively. Secondly, cultural belief system of the people also affects their development. Thirdly, inadequate planning of developmental projects caused by lack of collaborative efforts of the government and the youths also hinder development in Ideato North LGA. Finally it was recommended that government should focus more attention in the development of rural areas in order not to allow them fell neglected and rejected. Rural people should learn to welcome and harness development despite their cultural belief system and there should be a collaborative effort of the government and the people, more especially the youths in planning and implementation of rural development projects.



1.1              Background to the Study

In Nigeria, the rural areas are not progressing in line with urban areas or metropolitan states in term having sustainable development like good road, electricity, good telecommunication, transportation, good water supply, standard market and health centres, improved housing as well as improved agricultural and storage facilities that would help in sustaining the rural masses. McKnight (1995) defined the term rural development as the overall development of rural areas to improve the quality of life of the rural people.

According to Ihumodu (2003), rural development is the process of economic and social progress aimed at eradicating poverty among rural populace through provision of life and satisfying the basic needs of the people. Eradicating poverty among rural people demands appropriate skill. Rural people are endowed with quantum of knowledge and traditional skills, but at their primitive levels, that needs development to fit in properly with the modern trends of thing (Stall & Stoecker, 1998). This can be achieved through capacity building programmes. Capacity building is the process of developing skill, ability and faculties individually and collectively, that is vital in comprehending rural development and its roles in ameliorating rural poverty, ignorance, low human skill and literacy (Castelloe, 2002). All these are done to sustain the development of rural setting. Sustainable development vector (i.e. elements of desirable social objectives or attributes which societies seek to achieve through conserving natural resources (Pearce & Barbier, 1999).

Most rural societies are not able to achieve development because they lack the basic resources that would bring development or they are not able to harness and utilize the......

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