1.1 Background to the Study
In recent times, small and
medium scale business has been a major source of revenue to most urban
dwellers in Nigerian cities. World Tourism Organization (2016) has
pointed out that hotels are now regarded as one of the best monuments in
developed and developing countries of world. First class hotels in
Abuja, Lagos, Port-Harcourt, Calabar, Kano, Kaduna, etc now rank one of
the best tourist attractions in Africa. This is evidence that hotels and
recreational centers serve as tourism centers through the provision of
tourism facilities in most Nigerian Cities (Fred, 2017). Awaritefe
(2004) opined that environmental perception is one of the psychological
processes that occur as a result of the interaction of humans with their
environment. Awaritefe (2003) emphasize the significance of positive
perceptions by consumers in their selection of holiday resorts. This
implies that small scale hotels plays significant role in the
development of Oleh.
Small scale business such as hotels and
recreational centers is necessary as it is imperative to incorporate new
business idea in form of entrepreneurship in business which will equip
tourists to meet the socio-economic requirement of the world of work. It
will empower the young youths and provide job for the timid unemployed
youths in Nigeria (Evans, 2016). Through small scale businesses, they
can explore the business and economic opportunities around them to
become self-employed and create job for other people. Through small
scale business, specific skills that are needed for successful
entrepreneurship is taught such as the knowledge of the business
environment, managerial skills, marketing strategies etc. According to
Martins (2017), small scale businesses which is an essential tool for
economic development, will take cognizance of the need to provide
unemployed youths with the ability and skills to be gainfully employed
upon completion of their programme as well as prepare them for setting
up their small businesses as entrepreneurs. All these are in tandem with
the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategies (NEEDS)
thrust on value orientation, employment generation and wealth creation.
As observed by Elvis (2014), tourism has
been of great help to most entrepreneurs who see the need of venturing
into small scale businesses such as hotels and recreational centers. The
Delta State Ministry of Culture and Tourism Development in 2016
declared Wellington Hotel, Warri, Grand Hotel, Asaba, Delta Plaza,
Obiaruku, Home Base Hotel Kwale, and other fancy hotels within the
states which meets tourism requirement as tourists sites. In this vein,
the World Tourism Organization (WTO) in recent years has approved
various hotels such as Chariton Hotel, Abuja and Leki Suit, Lagos as
monuments and tourists attractions (Tourism Factbook, 2017). Osuala
(2009) predicted that small scale business at grass root level will not
only drastically reduce social vices among the youth but will also cater
for all interests, the dropouts, the handicapped, the geniuses and
other physically-fit persons.
Small scale business at grass root
entails the strategies as adopted by the tourists, which vary from
locations to locations. A hotel which is usually positioned at urban
centers and open places will always have more people patronizing it than
that located in villages and remote areas that are inaccessible. Okon
(2002) confirmed that small scale business strategies include not only
the manner of presentation of tourist facilities, but everything that
he/she (tourists) does in the way of arranging tourism items within the
hotel to tourism activities.
According to Obi, (2005) small scale
business is much more than opening a business, it involves turning the
small business into big business opportunities which eventually become
tourist attraction in future. This is in agreement with the tourism
approach proposed by Shepherd and Douglas in Agbamu, (2011) and has been
touted as an effective path towards developing the entrepreneurial
spirit. This approach requires a shift from the traditional small scale
businesses to active participation in a real life entrepreneurial
environment (Nyanducha, 2006). The approach enables the tourist engage
in some activity, reflect upon the activity, derive insight from the
analysis and incorporate the result through a change in understanding of
what (Sherman, Serbora & Pigman, 2008) calls experiential learning,
which is gained through experience.
Osuala (2009) opines that small scale
business remains a practical experience that empowers the youths for
greater challenges of the future, as it will enable the individual to
understand how the economic decision he makes will influence his present
and future standard of living as he will understand how the labour
market functions. Thus, entrepreneurship in business at grass root is
supposed to be dynamic, practice-oriented and activity based through the
application of different teaching strategies. According to Fred (2017),
assessing the challenges of small scale hotels in Nigeria would help
highlight the challenges confronting small scale hotels in Nigeria with a
view to tackling such challenges so that investors can be confident
enough to invest in the Nigerian economy which would at the long run
help in the socio-economic development of Nigeria.
Studies have shown that people have
neglected small scale business and business environment have not been
friendly for people who do not have the required capital to sustain the
business especially the establishment of hotels and recreational centers
which requires huge capital and finance. It is against this background
that this study is carried out to assess the challenges of small scale
hotels in Oleh, Delta State.
1.2 Statement of the Problems
problem associated with small scale businesses is the sustainability of
the business. Majority of the hotels in Oleh lack the required hotel
facilities needed to make tourists and others comfortable (Evans, 2016).
The establishment of hotels requires huge capital and adequate funding.
Most hotels managers in Oleh lack the required managerial skill to run
the business and the knowledge in making the hotel a tourist attraction
sites (Fred, 2017). Awaritefe (2017) in his inaugural lecture
highlighted the problems facing Nigerian development and tourism
sectors. He opined that most travelers often find it difficult to
patronize hotels and recreational centers due to lack of facilities.
Another major problem facing
the development of hotels in Oleh is the negligence of hotel owners who
see hotel business as profit making rather than tourism venture. Tourism
is best effective if hotels are developed and provided with the tourism
items needed so as to make tourists who wish to lodge after the
see-sighting such as the case of Obudu Cattle Ranch and Tinapa, Calabar,
Cross River State. It has been observed that small scale businesses
have not yielded much profit as expected. This often discourages
businessmen/women who wish to venture into hotel business since they see
it as seasonal business. Resource are therefore diverted to other
sectors thereby causing serious setback in tourism since hotels when
developed to world standard are major sources of tourist attraction in
developed and developing world.
Most hotels which are located in flooded
areas and difficult terrain face usually have low patronage since most
tourists prefer accessible areas than inaccessible routes. These
problems have hindered the development of hotels in Delta State at
large. This study is therefore carried out to address the aforementioned
1.3 Aim and Objectives of the Study
The aim of
this study is to assess the challenges of small scale hotels in Oleh,
Delta State. The study will achieve the following objectives;
- identify the challenges facing small scale hotels in Oleh, Delta State;
- examine the factors responsible for slow growth of small scale hotels in the study area;
- examine the factors that can enhance the growth of small scale hotels in Oleh, Delta State;
- to suggest possible solutions to the development of small scale hotel in Oleh, Delta State.
1.4 Research Questions
The following questions were raised in this study;
- What are the challenges confronting small scale hotels in Oleh, Delta State?
- What are the factors responsible for slow growth of small scale hotels in the study area?
- What are the factors that can enhance the growth of small scale hotels in Oleh, Delta State?
- What are the possible solutions to the development of small scale hotel in Oleh, Delta State?
The following research hypothesis states in the null form will be tested in this study;
is no significant relationship between the challenges facing small
scale hotels and the level of development of Oleh, Delta State.
H02: Small scale hotels has no significant impact on the economy of Oleh.
1.6 Significance of the study
This study focuses on the assessment of
hotels in Oleh, Delta State. This will enhance the development of hotels
since they act as tourist attraction centers. The overall consideration
of the significance of the study will be summarized in the following
- Fill the gap in the literature in the areas of hotel development,
- It become not a primary but a secondary source of information for researchers , academicians and practitioners,
- Serve as guiding documents for
policy makers for the adaption, formulation and implementation of a
genuine urban development strategies, efficient urban management,
migration policy, through hotel establishment, etc.
- Give insight for the town
administrators about the existing and emerging socio-economic challenge
of the migrants in relation with the socio-economic services provided by
the town administration.
1.7 STUDY AREA
1.7.1 Location and Size
Oleh is located between latitude 60 091N and 60 291N of the equator and longitude 50 301E and 60 031E
of the Green Witch meridian. Oleh is a town in Isoko South Local
Government Area of Delta in southern Nigeria. As a matter of fact, it is
the headquarter of Isoko South Local Government Area which occupies an
area of 732km2. Like any other community, Oleh is divided
into two (2) region namely; urban and rural areas. The nature,
topography and terrain of Oleh is such that encourages landform
development especially the establishment of hotels, although other
factors still prevail in the area hindering the development of hotels in