The study is an appraisal of insecurity on the agricultural sector of the Nigerian business environment. A research survey design was adopted while descriptive statistics and t-test were used to analyse the dat. The study however make use of both primary and secondary source of data. The primary data were gotten from structured questionnaire and oral interview while the secondary data were from article journals, textbooks, newspaper publications and internet source.. Based on the findings, the study recommends that Government should take legal and justifiable action to ensure that the ills caused by insecurity both BokoHaram and herdsmen to the agricultural sector are arrested and farmers encouraged with better incentives to go back to farm.
1.1 Background to the Study
Agriculture in Nigeria is the most important sector of the economy from the standpoint of rural employment, sufficiency in food and fibre, and export earning prior to the discovery of oil (Towobola, et.al 2014). The above assertion is based on the fact that as at independence in 1960, little was known of petroleum as a source of revenue for the Nigerian economy. There was sustained emphasis on agriculture such that Nigeria was a major exporter of agricultural products like palm produce, cocoa, groundnut, cotton and rubber. In addition to these cash crops, the national agricultural system produced enough food crops such as yam, cassava, maize, millet, sorghum and soya beans so that there was practically no need for food importation. Hitherto, agriculture accounted for over 60% of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) (Francis and David, 2012).
According to Akinwumi (2014), in the 1960s, before the discovery of oil, Nigeria was known to be a major agricultural producer in the world. Between 1962 and 1968, export crops were the country’s main foreign exchange earner. Nigeria was number one amongst other countries like Malaysia and Indonesia in products like palm oil and groundnuts, even ahead of the US and Argentina. Nigeria’s status with 47% in these products which made her as an agricultural centre has declined steeply. While Nigeria once provided 18% of the world demand of cocoa, second in the world in the 1960s, that figure has drastically reduced to 8%. Also the country which was known to produce 65% of tomatoes in West Africa has become the leading importer of tomato paste.
Despite the poor performance of the agricultural sector which is below economic expectation, the sector is still capable of aiding socioeconomic development of people living in rural areas, most especially in the northern states as they engaged more in agriculture in order to sustain themselves, and traded within their capacity or capabilities for profit. However, the on-going Boko Haram insurgency has affected the rural agricultural economy the northern, part of Nigeria, hence, this work is an appraisal of the impact of Boko Haram insurgency on the agricultural sector of the Nigerian business environment.
1.2 Statement of Problem