Radio and agricultural development: An influence assessment of the programme Mugambo Wa Murimi on farming practices of farmers in Gatanga Constituency.
The purpose of this study was to assess the influence of the program Mugambo Wa Murimi on farming practices of farmers in Gatanga Constituency. The study also sought to investigate the perceptions and attitudes of the farmers towards the program, find out how the farmers use agricultural information to improve farming methods and explore farmers’ opinion on how agricultural programs on radio can be improved. It was carried out in Gatanga Constituency, Muranga County. The study used mixed methods. Both qualitative and quantitative research methods were used. The data collection instruments used in the study were questionnaires and interviews. The target population of the study was all small scale farmers aged between 25 to 65 years in Gatanga Constituency. In addition, the study used purposive sampling technique. Simple random sampling method was used in selecting three wards of Gatanga Constituency. These wards were: Gatanga, Kakuzi and Kariara. Qualitative data was analyzed in the form of words and narratives. On the other hand, quantitative data was analyzed using descriptive statistics. The main findings of the study revealed that the program Mugambo Wa Murimi had influenced most of the farmers to become better at their farming practice (96.6%) while 76.7% had been able to practice a new farming method learnt from the program. In addition the findings indicated that 91.4% of the farmers found the program useful and 81% of the farmers had been able to use information from the program to improve their farming practices. The study recommends that the producer should include topics on maize disease precaution and control, making biogas and waste product usage. Additionally topics on agribusiness, especially those that relate to production and markets as well as where farmers can borrow finances should be explored so as to improve farming practices.