Community-driven Development Strategy for Sustainable Infrastructure

Onyekwere N. Ezirim, Chinwe U. Okpoechi


Many border communities are far from city centres and obscured from the mainstream of development. This can foster environments where insecurity, criminality, and certain anti-state activities thrive unabated, thereby posing a real danger to the sovereignty of the Nigerian State. Akamkpa Local Government Area in Cross River State is one such border territory. This research studied the border communities in the Akamkpa local government area to assess the contributions of government-driven infrastructure intervention projects in the development of the communities. The study is aimed at evolving an appropriate strategy for integrating border communities into the mainstream of development in Nigeria. Four border villages closest to the Cameroon border with Nigeria were chosen for the study through purposive sampling. The primary source of data collection was through a questionnaire survey, which was administered randomly to forty household heads in the communities studied. Analysis of the data was by a combination of simple descriptive statistics and inferential statistics. The findings of the study showed that the provision of basic infrastructure and services in the study area has remained grossly deficient, notwithstanding the government infrastructure intervention policy currently in place. The results of the survey further showed that residents would like to have a say in infrastructure planning and delivery in their communities, which is presently not the case. The study concludes by proposing a strategy of community participation in a sustained regime of infrastructure and service provision by relevant agencies. This is believed to have the potential to positively impact their livelihoods, improve the security and integrity of their borders, and create the right atmosphere for patriotism to thrive.


Doi: 10.28991/HEF-2020-01-02-01

Full Text: PDF


Border Communities; Livelihood; Sustainable Development; Community-driven Development Strategy.


Osimen, G. U., Anegbode, E. J., Akande, C. A., & Oyewole, O. O. (2017). The Borderless-Border and Internal Security Challenges in Nigeria. International Journal of Political Science, 3(3), 17-27. doi:10.20431/2454-9452.0303003.

Seniora, J., & Poitevin, C. (2010). Managing Land borders and the trafficking of small arms and light weapons. Group for Research and Information on Peace and Security. Available online: (accessed on February 2019).

Osuntokun, Jide, (2000). The Nature of Nigeria- Cameroon Relations. A Policy briefing paper submitted to the Presidency, Abuja, Nigeria, 10-11.

Federal Government of Nigeria (2003). Border Communities Development Agency (Establishment, etc.) Act, 2003. Nigeria. Available online: (accessed on February 2020).

Ate, B. E., & Akinterinwa, B. A. (2011). Cross border armed banditry in the north east: issues in national security and Nigeria's relations with its immediate neighbours, Nigerian Institute of International Affairs Lagos: Nigeria.

Onuoha, F. C. (2011). Small arms and light weapons proliferation and human security in Nigeria. Conflict Trends, (1), 50-56.

Asemanya, J. A. (2006). Nigeria-Cameroon International Boundaries and the Dispute Over Bakassi Peninsula. Aboki Publishers, Makurdi, Nigeria.

Mailabari, N., & Hamidu, I. (2015). Developing Nigeria’s border paradigm: The panacea for national security, socio-economic and political development. Developing Countries Studies, 5(21), 154-161.

Dugarova, E., & Lavers, T. (2014). Social Inclusion and the Post-2015 sustainable development agenda. Sl: UN Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD), New York, United States.

Gupta, J., Pouw, N. R. M., & Ros-Tonen, M. A. F. (2015). Towards an Elaborated Theory of Inclusive Development. The European Journal of Development Research, 27(4), 541–559. doi:10.1057/ejdr.2015.30.

UN (2018). Sustainable Development Goals. Available online: (accessed on January 2020).

Gupta, J., & Nilsson, M. (2017). 12 Toward a Multi-level Action Framework for Sustainable Development Goals. Governing through goals: Sustainable Development Goals as governance innovation, MIT Press, 275-294.

Amster, M. H., & Lindquist, J. (2005). Frontiers, Sovereignty, and Marital Tactics: Comparisons from the Borneo Highlands and the Indonesia-Malaysia-Singapore Growth Triangle. The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology, 6(1), 1–17. doi:10.1080/14442210500074846.

Hageman, K., Berger, S., Gemie, S., & Williams, C. (2004). Creating and crossing borders: The state, future and quality of border studies. Glamorgan: University of Glamorgan.

Sofield, T. H. B. (2006). Border Tourism and Border Communities: An Overview. Tourism Geographies, 8(2), 102–121. doi:10.1080/14616680600585489.

Ishikawa, N. (2010). Between Frontiers: Nation and Identity in a Southeast Asian borderland. Ohio University Press, Ohio, United States.

Ardhana, I. K., Langub, J., & Chew, D. (2004). Borders of kinship and ethnicity: Cross-border relations between the Kelalan Valley, Sarawak, and the Bawan Valley, East Kalimantan. Borneo Research Bulletin, 35, 144-180.

Tirtosudarmo, R. (2006). In the margin of a borderland: The Florenese community between Nunukan and Tawau. Centering the margin: Agency and narrative in Southeast Asian borderlands, 4, 135.

Akinyemi, O. (2013). Globalization and Nigeria border security: Issues and challenges. Globalization, 11, 96-117.

Chambers, R., & Conway, G. (1992). Sustainable rural livelihoods: practical concepts for the 21st century. Institute of Development Studies (UK), Falmer, England.

Ellis, F. (2008). The Determinants of Rural Livelihood Diversification in Developing Countries. Journal of Agricultural Economics, 51(2), 289–302. doi:10.1111/j.1477-9552.2000.tb01229.x.

UNDP (2004). Reclaiming the Lands, Sustaining Livelihoods. Available online: (accessed on March 2019).

Walker, J., Mitchell, B., & Wismer, S. (2001). Livelihood strategy approach to community- based planning and assessment: a case study of Molas, Indonesia. Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal, 19(4), 297–309. doi:10.3152/147154601781766925

Department for International Development DFID. (2001). Sustainable livelihoods Guidance sheets. Available online: (accessed on December 2019).

Rahut, D. B., Ali, A., Kassie, M., Marenya, P. P., & Basnet, C. (2014). Rural Livelihood Diversification Strategies in Nepal. Poverty & Public Policy, 6(3), 259–281. doi:10.1002/pop4.75.

Udu, L. E., & Onwe, S. O. (2016). Approaches to Community Development in Nigeria, Issues and Challenges: A Study of Ebonyi State Community and Social Development Agency (EB-CSDA). Journal of Sustainable Development, 9(1), 296. doi:10.5539/jsd.v9n1p296.

Cairncross, A. K. (1961). International Trade and Economic Development. Economica, 28(111), 235. doi:10.2307/2601600.

Mabogunje, A. L (1980). The Development Process: A Spatial Perspective, Hutchinson and Company, London, United Kingdom.

Mabogunje, A. L. (1993). Infrastructure: The crux of modern urban development. Urban age, 1(3), 3. World Bank. Washington, United States.

Li, J., Krishnamurthy, S., Roders, A. P., & Van Wesemael, P. (2020). Community participation in cultural heritage management: A systematic literature review comparing Chinese and international practices. Cities, 96, 102476. doi:10.1016/j.cities.2019.102476.

Bamberger, M. (2007). The Role of Community Participation in Effectiveness of Projects. Readings in Project Effectiveness, The World Bank: Economic Development Institute, 52-67.

Streeton, P. (2003). First things first: Meeting Basic Human Needs in Developing Countries, London: Oxford University Press.

Oakley, P. and Marsden D. (2007). Approaches to Participation in Rural Development, Geneva: International Labour Office.

Salmen, L. (2006). Beneficiary Assessment: An Approach Described, World Bank, Washington, United States.

Woodhead, L. (2006). Cost-Benefit Analysis, Englewood Cliffs, Prentice-Hall Inc. New Jersey, United States.

Egler, H. P., & Frazao, R. (2016). Sustainable infrastructure and finance: how to contribute to a sustainable future. Geneva: UNEP Inquiry/Global Infrastructure Basel Foundation.

Inter-American Development Bank (2018). What is Sustainable Infrastructure: A framework to guide sustainability across the project cycle, Inter-American Development Bank: Felipe Herrera.

Mercer and Inter-American Development Bank (2017). Crossing the Bridge to Sustainable Infrastructure Investing: Exploring Ways to make it across. Washington, United States.

Gupta, J., & Baud, I. S. A. (2015). Sustainable development in P. Pattberg & F. Zelli (Eds.), Encyclopedia of global environmental politics and governance, 61–72. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, England.

Schoneveld, G. C. (2014). The politics of the forest frontier: Negotiating between conservation, development, and indigenous rights in Cross River State, Nigeria. Land Use Policy, 38, 147-162. doi:10.1016/j.landusepol.2013.11.003.

Full Text: PDF

DOI: 10.28991/HEF-2020-01-02-01


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2021 CHINWE Ugochi Okpoechi