Return Migration Patterns and Characteristics in Rural Communities of Nigeria's Niger Delta Region: Implications for Rural Development Policy

This paper analyzed the return migrants post-return occupational choice behaviours in their communities compared with the traditional occupations that characterize their communities. State and non-state actors in Nigeria have a major role to play in promoting greater investment in agriculture and supporting the adoption of sound policies that address the root causes of rural out-migration and create viable options for rural people to consider migration as an alternative and not a last resort. Policies should also attempt to counterbalance the negative effects of migration, such as social dislocation, agricultural labour shortages, or rapid deterioration in the provision of social services. The Niger Delta region of Nigeria is in dire need of rural development strategies that will discourage the inhabitants of rural areas from out-migrating as well as encourage those that left the rural areas for various reasons to return and contribute to the development of the region if peace in the Niger Delta region is to be sustained.