Executive Summary – – – – – – 1
Background of the study – – – – – – 2-3
Statement of the problem – – – – – – 3-4
Research questions – – – – – – 4
Objective of the study – – – – – – 4-5
Research Hypotheses – – – – – 5
Significance of the study – – – – – – 5
Scope and Limitations of the study – – – – – 5-6
Definition of terms – – – – – 6

2.1 Awareness and Perception of the Female Farmers or HIV/AIDs- – – 7-10
2.2 Lost and Affected Due to HIV/AIDs – – – – – 10
2.3 HIV/AIDs Productive Age, and Poor Farm Production – – – – 11-12
2.4 Farming, HIV/AIDs and Poverty Level – – – – – 13-17
3.1 Area of the Study – – – – – – 18
3.2 Source of Data – – – – – – – 18
3.3 Population of the Study – – – – – – – 19
3.4 Sample Technique – – – – – 19
3.5 Instrumentation – – – – – – – 19
3.6 Methods of data Analysis – – – – – 20
3.7 Decision Rule – – – – – 20


1.1 Background to the Study.
Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a viral disease caused by Human Immuno Deficiency Virus (HIV), usually found in the body fluids like blood, semen, virginal fluid and breast milk infected persons. The virus can be transferred from one infected person to another mostly through sexual intercourse and sharing of unsterilized instruments like blades, knives and syringe among others which had been used by the infected persons.
Since HIV/AIDS was discovered in 1981, its destructive and disruptive influence as a pandemic has been highlighted by various researchers. Its impact has been particularly severe on the economics of the developing world and on the marginalized population in industrialized countries (UNDP, 2004).It has been established that the worst-hit region of the world is sub-Saharan Africa where HIV/AIDs is the leading cause of death with 25 million people infected (UNAIDS, 2006:13). However, Stokes (2003) observed that because most of the hardest hit countries are still overwhelmingly in rural areas, the epidemic represents an enormous threat to rural and agricultural development.
In Nigeria, the first diagnosed case of HIV/AIDS was in 1986 and ever since then, its prevalence has risen from 0 to 1.8 percent by 1991, 3.8 percent in 1993, 4.5 percent in 1996 and by 2001, the prevalence has risen to 5.8 percent (FGN, 2004). The result of 2003 sentinel survey revealed that the national prevalence has declined from 5.8 percent in 2001 to 5.0 percent in 2003 and 4.4 percent in 2005 (NACA, 2006). Nigeria’s national prevalence rate of 5.0 percent or even the 5.0 percent though higher than those of other African countries to the South, Central and East. However, Nigeria’s large population of 150 million accord the rate of challenge on reducing the number of infected person as an additional significance. This significance is captured by the total number of people living with HIV/AIDS which has been projected in 2003 at between 3.2 to 3.8 million (FMOH, 2005).
HIV/AIDS has the potential to create severe economic impact in many African countries and it is difficult from most other diseases because it strikes people in the most productive age group and is essentially 100 percent fatal. The effects vary according to the severity of the scourge and the structure of the national economies (Mukurazita, 2007).
The HIV/AIDS pandemic had caused too numerous health care and economic problem in our world. It was in recognition of this great pandemic and in an attempt to address this available increase of HIV/AIDS infection that National AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Disease Control Programme (NASCP) was established in 1988. In line with the foregoing, NARHS (2005) opined that government also supported NASCP by setting up an implementing body known as National Action Committee on AIDs (NACA) and Presidential Committee on AIDs (PCA) in 2001; this gave way for each state to have State Action Committee on Aids (SACA), meant to properly guide and counsel patients and as well make adequate related public enlightenment campaigns.
HIV/AIDs undermines agricultural systems and affects the nutritional situation and food security of most rural farmers who are majorly women since the rural areas have the largest population of HIV/AIDS patients (Slater and Wiggins, 2005). Chukuezi (2002) reflects that with HIV/AIDs and related disease, African potential is reduced. Its human resources are wasted, a complex mix of social and political problem are created making life and progress more difficult.
Agriculture being the major livelihood activity of sub-Saharan Africans, is under a particularly severe strain as a result of the epidemic. The epidemic had led to further weakening of rural institution in their capacity to deliver extension services and has undermined the effectiveness of natural agricultural policies (Topouzis, 2003; Jayne, Villarel, Pingali and Hemrich 2004).
The deleterious effect of HIV/AIDS according to Barnett and Rugalema (2001) has created or contributed to exorbitant health care cost, labour shortage, a declining asset base, breakdown of social bonds, downgraded crops and led to loss of livestock. This effect has also been connected to some of the cultural practices that are possibly connected with increased virus transmission (female circumcision and infibulations), non-sexual cultural practices that do not fit the age distribution pattern of AIDS, but which may expose individual to HIV because of exposure to blood (example medical bloodletting, ritual and medicinal enemas) and practices involving the use of shared instruments (injection of medicines, ritual scarification, group circumcision, genital tattoing, oral tattoing, other body tattoing, tribal marking and shaving of body hairs with unsterilized blades. Most of these traditional practices are carried out in groups by traditional birth attendants, tattooist and local barbers.
Consequently, there is need for counseling among the women farmers which will not only enhance voluntary testing but also would induce maximal readjustment to realities of life accordingly. Counselling is the wheel upon which guidance programmes revolve. Guidance connotes the principles of guiding, steering, leading, directing, assisting, e.t.c. It is a process and procedure for achieving a helping relationship. Counseling in this context is to effect mutuality, respect and acceptance between the rural farmers and counselors to facilitate growth, change and readjustment programmes in the face of the HIV/AIDs scourge. This is meant to induce maximal functionality as could be possible among the women farmers. The implication of this is that the women will have the prevalence of going for voluntary testing which in turn will not only reduce the incidence of HIV/AIDs scourge but will also increase adjustment programmes and functionality among the women farmers’ families.
Unlike many diseases, AIDs affects individuals in their most productive years, with the majority of the infections occurring in people between the age of 20 years and 40 years (Spore, 1997).
Stokes (2003) estimated the productive age group at which HIV infections and AIDs death are concentrated to be 15 years to 49 years. Hence, the loss of human capital leads directly to a loss of financial capital. This directly aggravates poverty in the affected households.
The pandemic increases poverty by stripping assets. Assets rundown leaves individuals, families, and communities more exposed to future health and nutritional shocks (Flores, 2001). Wilson (2001) also asserts that loss of income and agricultural labour cause a decrease in household access to nutritious food. To raise cash to pay for healthcare or food, families sell food-producing assets such as chickens or goats. Given its effect on agricultural production and other livelihood strategies, HIV/AIDs can contribute to a reduction of the amount of food available to individuals, households and communities. This may lead to lower food intake, thus reducing both individual nutritional status and household food security (Curry et al ., 2006).
HIV Sero-prevalence survey, Benue State recorded the highest infection rates of 16.80% in 1999, 13.50% in 2001 and 10.00% in 2005 (Wende, 2010). Since more than 80% of the people of the state are farmers, it means that, agriculture as a sector is most affected. Farmers, in their productive age which are affected can no longer produce hence, a reduction in total food production.
Besides, much more time is now spent on burials, instead of spending the desired time on the farms. This means a devastating impact on house hold food security.
Gyado (2002) stated that, majority of Nigerians living with HIV/AIDS (more than 80.00% of those living with HIV/AIDS) are people with HIV infection through sexual contact. It can be also be transmitted by artificial insemination with donated sperm. This is simply just when semen of a man is introduced into a woman without adequate screening. In Benue state, a large proportion of the population has a lower nutrition status resulting in a higher susceptibility to HIV/AIDS infection. Also, AIDS emerged against a backdrop of poverty, conflict and inadequate infrastructure (Munonye and Okoli, 2009). The pandemic has become a determining factor of food and nutrition insecurity not only in Benue state, but in Nigeria and the region at large
The high prevalence of HIV/AIDs in Nigeria, has been on increasing rates, and alarming data from NACA (2018), indicates that women are the most infected population by the disease. Human immunodeficiency virus infection and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome is a spectrum of conditions caused by infection with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Youths and women have been identified as risk group for this dreaded disease in the world. Young women are at higher risk, itinerant workers, traders, prostitutes help in the spreading of HIV/AIDs.
According to World Health Organization (WHO, 2018), about 30% of young women ages 15-25 years are currently living with the infection in the rural areas. Akwa Ibom State is ranked 6th with 6.5% prevalence with 67% identified in the rural areas hence it becomes a point of concern for the research. HIV/AIDs is one of the most widespread disease which has affected our society today, however, data on countries prevalence of HIV/AIDs shows that of 10 most populous HIV nations, 8 are Africans which according to NACA are cultural based. Data according to Daniel, (2011) has at that HIV/AIDs is on an increasing level with women as the highest infected group because of:
Rural peoples perception of the disease
Poor level of awareness of the disease in the rural area
Gender inequality and male dominance
Violence and sexual violence
Poverty and;
Cultural beliefs and practice like circumcision in the rural area.
Daniel (2011), signaled illiteracy rate, poverty and women’s indifference approach to sex in over traditional societies as variables which influence the spread of the disease, therefore, calling for more awareness creation by government, NGOs and community leaders, creation of rural access for the marketing of agricultural product of the farmers which is hoped will reduced poverty and the spread of the disease. It should be noted that HIV/AIDs has the potential to create severe economic impact as it strikes people in the most productive age group and is essentially 100% fatal.
The HIV/AIDs pandemic had caused too numerous healthcare and economic problem in our rural societies. It was in recognition of this great pandemic and in an attempt to address this available increase of HIV/AIDs infection that nations AIDs and Sexually Transmitted Disease Control Programme (NASCP) was established in 1988. in line with the foregoing, NARHS, (2005) opined that government also supported NASCP by setting up an implementing body knows as National Action Committee on AIDs (NACA) and presidential Committee on AIDS (PCA) in 2001; this gave way for each state to have such committees at state and local levels.
HIV/AIDs undermines agricultural production, and on the strength of this the need for this study on the perception of female farmers of the disease do arise to access their socio-economic characteristics, awareness and knowledge level of the disease and the effect of the spread of it on agricultural production.

1.2 Statement of Problem
HIV/AIDS is a major threat to rural development and food security, because, it reduces active work force and productivity through diminished and or demise of human labor. This scenario already had a devastating effect on agricultural productivity of the state. Production of such crops as yam, cassava, rice, soybean and Benny seed have been on the decline. Although, much research has been done concerning the prevalence rate of HIV/AIDS in Nigeria in general and in Akwa Ibom State in particular, none has been carried out concerning the farmers’ knowledge about the disease.
The recent estimate of the prevalence HIV/AIDs among rural women in Akwa Ibom State in particular and Nigeria in general, raises the question of perception of the disease by the victims. To UNAIDS (2017), the question had been together the mode of transmission and awareness of the disease is different from that of urban centers. However, studies by Nwabueze, (2011), points to cultural factors noting that the different is especially apparent because the male-female ratio of affected individual in the urban areas is 1:1 while in the rural area there are is 1:6. This studies has it that the perception that HIV/AIDs is a witchcraft related disease as a serious reason why the disease is on aim increase in the rural areas.
In other studies by Daniel, (2011), cultural practices have spread of the disease and this cultural practices according to Daniel is victims by the perception of the people. Daniel identified; sexual promiscuity with a high prevalence of sexually transmitted disease (STD), sexual practices that have been associated with a high level of transmission of HIV; and cultural practices that are possibly connected with increased virus transmission (female circumcision), practices resulting to blood. Which as a practices among the rural women whose practices as encourage by their perception.
With the above studies therefore, on the attitude of women (rural) towards sex whose believe is that they are of obligation to have sex with their husband at whenever they demand, cultural practices which has defile abstinence and level of awareness in the area. This study therefore seeks to find out whether female farmers perception of HIV/AIDs enhances the spread of the disease in Uyo Agricultural Zone.
It is true that several measures have been put in place to curtail the spread of HIV/AIDS in Nigeria. But, contemporary observations show that the scourge has continued unabated. HIV/AIDS pandemic seem to increase every day while development agencies are trying to prevent its further spread and reduction on productive rural women farmers.
There seem to be dearth of knowledge on the perception and awareness of HIV/AIDS among women farmers Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria. Therefore, it becomes necessary to carry out an empirical study in order to obtain necessary information that would aid agricultural policies formulation.
1.3 Research Questions
What is the farmers’ knowledge level of HIV/AIDS diseases in Akwa Ibom State.
What is the awareness level of HIV/AIDs mode of transmition in the study area?
What is the farmers’ perception of HIV/AIDs in the study area?
What is the farmers’ perception on mode of prevention of HIV/AIDS
What is the farmers’ perception of implication of HIV/AIDS victims.