APPROPRIATENESS OF INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGIES’ (ICTs) USE: A CASE STUDY OF AGRICULTURAL INFORMATION DISSEMINATION IN OGUN STATE, NIGERIA
This study ascertained the appropriateness of ICTs’ use in disseminating agricultural information. Farmers and extension agents totalling 159 respondents were sampled using multi-stage procedure for the study. Validated questionnaire/interview schedule were used for data collection. Data obtained were analysed using relevant descriptive and inferential statistics. Results show that phones, radio and television were the ICTs commonly employed by extension agents (74%, 54% and 49%) and farmers (96%, 94% and 49%) for agricultural information transmission and reception, respectively. Likewise, extension agents noted phones (74%), radio (64%), television (49%), newspapers (30%) and internet services (28%) as highly relevant for disseminating agricultural information. However, only phones (73%) and radio (72%) were indicated by farmers as highly relevant for the reception. Also, most farmers were dissatisfied with messages’ channelling via use of CD-Roms (100%), internet services (98%) and newspapers (85%), despite satisfaction of some extension agents with use of newspapers (31%) and internet services (18%). Test of hypothesis revealed that at p<0.05, use of ICTs is significantly related to age and cosmopoliteness of farmers (r= -0.371 and 0.213) and extension agents (0.365 and 0.511), respectively. It was concluded that mobile phones and radio are appropriate technologies that can be harnessed for augmenting agricultural information dissemination.
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