American Journal of Rural Development. 2013, 1(3), 33-39DOI:
Abstract: The government of Zimbabwe has embarked on the Rural Electrification Programme from 1989. The programme’s objectives are to stimulate socio-economic development in rural areas of Zimbabwe through the provision of access to electricity; to raise the standards of living of rural people through the delivery of enhanced social services in health, education and income generation projects. There is strong belief that the programme will help reverse rural to urban migration. To evaluate the stakeholders’ perception of socio-economic benefits of the programme the study employed a quantitative descriptive approach. Descriptive statistics and stepwise regression analysis were applied to draw relationship between variables understudy. A self-distributed questionnaire based on a Likert scale of 1-5 was administered to investigate the stakeholders` perception of the benefits of the rural electrification programme in the Umzingwane District for the period 2005 – 2010. A prior or pilot study was conducted to establish the reliability of the instrument and a coefficient of 0.742 was obtained. Data was analyzed with the aid of the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS). Different classes of respondents had different perceptions on the benefits of the Rural Electrification Programme. Mostly literate respondents perceived that Rural Electrification Programme brought more benefits on service delivery especially on health, communication and human resources retention, while the illiterate, who comprised mainly the villagers, perceived that the Rural Electrification Programme did not bring much of benefits to them.