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Shelter is one of the three basic needs of man, it ranks second to food in terms of importance and therefore its importance cannot be over emphasized. Man is his quest for survival, and a better standard of living  as reflected in recent times tends to migrate from areas were he is no longer comfortable to an area where he thinks life will be better for him and his household if he has any. This is usually from the rural areas to the few urban centers. With the growing trend of rural-urban migration due to the attraction of the few urban centers in the country, can it be truly said that there is truly adequate provision of housing for the increasing urban population? And where the available, are they affordable? Because for it to be said that a house is truly adequate, it goes beyond the shell, it has to meet the set standard of housing in terms of having the basic facilities that go to make it comfortable for it inhabitant as the basic requirements of good sanitary, security and environmental conditions must be met and it cost should not take too much of the income of the household, only then can a house be truly termed to be adequate and therefore livable. Shelter is an important need in the society and one in which government and the organize private sector often need to collaborated to satisfy. It has generally been observe that the main cause of housing shortage is the continuous increase in the number of immigrants who enter the urban centers from the rural areas. A social-economic of the fringe has been under taken through the collection of primary data of a structural question naira on a systematic sampling technique of household in the fringe. In formatting so obtain has been completed with secondary data from various textbook and journal indicated in chapter two. The findings of the study have been statistically analyzed in chapter four and use and use to reach conclusion and recommendation with are presented in chapter five of the study.

The major finding and conclusion are that here has to be an observe influx of migrate in search of job opportunities, educational purpose and in general a better living standard into the fringe population. This was the conclusion after a sampling of the population was done to ascertain the year that the respondents came into the fringe. To further buttress this point, it was observed that over 60% of the respondents were from other states and fringe of the country. It was observed by the researcher that there has however not been a corresponding increase in the rate of housing provision especially by the government and public agencies for masses.






The three basic things that man require to be able to survive are summed up in three basic needs, food, shelter and clothing. Shelter i.e. housing is ranked second only to food on the  scale of importance, the importance of housing therefore cannot be over emphasized as housing provides the framework for meeting man’s needs for shelter and constitute the physical environment in which the family and the society’s basic unit develops, (Emenike 1999).

Emenike also went on to state that for a house to be called a home, it has to go beyond the shell, it must be a resting place in which one tries to fulfill the fundamental purpose of human society; namely a secure, rewarding, happy or at least livable life. This therefore goes to show that housing does not only refer to the characteristics of the house but includes both the Internal and the external facilities that contribute to the conducive living.

Man in his guest for survival i.e. a better living standard tends to move from one location to another, this is to enable him to meets his needs and that of his family, if any. This migratory movement which could either be temporary or permanent is as a result of his search for a better living standard or more conducive environment. When he is no longer comfortable in a place, he would mostly relocate to another place with a better job, environment as well as the availability of the basic socio-economic facilities that goes to make a place more conducive. The factors that motivate man to move from his present place of residence is termed the “push factor” while those that attract him to a new place is term, the push factors” these push factors are found mostly in the urban areas of any region.

It is important to note however that, as people move from a particular area to another, it reflects directly on the population of both areas as the source areas of these migrations are de-populated while the destination areas on the other hand experience an increase in its population. Bringing the phenomenon nearer home, it is observe that the destination of most migration in less developed countries like Nigeria is usually from the rural to the urban areas, because the urban centre of commercial, political, administrative, educational, medical and other socio-economic activities. There is therefore an influx of people from the various rural areas and neighboring communities. This is made up of people in search of jobs, higher education (universities), better medical facilities and  in general a better way of life.

This situation leads to the rapid increase observed in the population of most urban fringes when compares to the rural areas. The main issue of concern here is how to access a balance between the rate of population increase and the rate of housing provision. The question is; are the housing facilities available in the urban fringes enough to accommodate, its ever increasing population? This question can not be readily answered in the affirmative; this is what has resulted in a large number of urbanities facing a lot of problems in their quest to get good accommodation. Consequently, they are forced to live in overcrowded, unplanned and undesirable houses that do not meet the standard requirements that go to make a house livable.


The rate of influx of people into the urban fringe of port Harcourt in recent times has become a huge source of concern as it is a normal trend that population increase of any areas comes with its attendant effect of congestion, overcrowding, slum and squatter settlements, environmental degradation and puts great pressure on the available housing facilities that are carrying far beyond their capacity.

The reasons that account for this trend in the city include; the rise in immigration, job opportunities, oil exploration, improvement in transport and communication modernization of the economy, the widening gab between the urban and rural wages and the oil boom of the 1970s,  (Emenike 1999).

The present issue is truly becoming more worrisome because the number of residents affected by the consequences of the population explosion is increasing and the housing conditions are worsening; this condition is further worsened by the inability of related authorities such as government, private institutions, individuals, corporate bodies etc. to provide adequate shelter. As Ekpeyong, 1989 put it; the city is growing at population growth rate while squatter settlements are growing at four times that rate.


The aim of this research study is to investigate the impart that population increase due to in-migration has had on housing in urban fringe of Port Harcourt.

The objectives of the study are as follows;

  1. To analyze the effect that urbanization has had on the city.
  2. To analyze the rate of population increase in the urban fringe in the five years.
  3. To investigate the way population increase has affected the cost of housing facilities in the fringe.
  4. To determine the efforts made by the government, private individuals and other corporate bodies to address the housing shortage in city.
  5. To proffer recommendation to assist ameliorating or if possible solve the housing problems currently being faced by the urban fringe of port Harcourt.


  1. How can the government in partnership with private land owners and other institutions work together to ameliorate the housing problems in the city.
  2. Where the houses of suitable standards are the affordable to every house seeker?
  3. Is government currently addressing the issue of housing in the fringe?


For the purpose of this research, the following hypotheses have been formulated and will consequently be tested for their validity;

Ho1 – population increase in the Port-Harcourt urban fringe is not due to influx of migrants into the fringe.

Ho2 – there is no relationship between influx of migrant and increase in the cost of rent.

These hypotheses will be tested at the 0.05 level of confidence, to determine if the null hypothesis will be accepted or rejected.


Getting good housing accommodation the urban fringe of Port Harcourt can be quite a challenging task as the option to choose from are limited by several factors including; availability and affordability. The situation here is that, with the influx of people into the urban fringe, there is an obvious shortage of housing facilities and where these houses are available, the tendency is that they may not meet the required housing standard due to the fact that they are put up in a hurry so as to meet the increase demand and as such the basic requirements of at least;

  1. A shower bath and a flush toilet
  2. Pipe born water
  3. Adequate electric light
  4. Ventilation
  5. Building materials of durable nature

As stipulated by the town and country act of 1959 to be the minimum requirements for residential buildings which are require making the house of standard may not be put in place.

In a situation where the above stated facilities are put in place in a residential building that is up for rent, the cost of course is far beyond the reach of the common man. The significance of this study therefore is to observe this issue critically and search for possible solutions to them so that the dilemma being faced by the urban fringe of Port Harcourt residents in search for good accommodation in face of a growing population can be ameliorated.


The study area Choba town in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area in Rivers State lies between latitude 4000”N, 5000”N and 6055”E, 7010”E (Ogionwo, 1979). The study area is bounded on the North by Port Harcourt city local government area on the east by Eleme local government area and on the south by Okrika local government area.

Map of the Study Area

Map of Port Harcourt Showing Choba Urban Fringe


This research work is only going to concern itself with the impacts of increasing population due to in-migration, on housing facilities in the urban fringe of Port Harcourt; the scope of this study is going to cover housing facilities within Choba in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the city.


Due to financial constraints that have foreseen, the study will take its sample from only a small part of the population, i.e. a small will be drawn and used to represent the entire population.


Housing: according to the oxford advanced learners dictionary, a house is a building for people to live in, usually of one family, Emenike (1999) define housing more comprehensively by saying that; housing provides the frame work for meeting man’s need for shelter and constitutes the physical environment in which the family, the society’s basic unit develops. For the purpose of this study, housing is going to refer only to the residential buildings.

Population: The Oxford Advanced Learner Dictionary defined population as; all the people who live in a particular area, city or country; the total number of people who live there. Akpogomeh (2007) on the other hand, define population as the total number of people living in a particular area at a particular time.

Migration: Since the increase in population of the urban fringe has been attributed to migration, it is only necessary that the concept be define as well. According to Adeyemo (2002) migration is the permanent or semi-permanent change of residence from one administrative unit to another.

Urban Fringe: This is an area that is outside the urban centre that sometimes have boundary with rural areas. It has confirmed land use activities and normally occupied by causal by casual workers and laborers. This zone exists at the out skirts of urban centre of the following:

 The area neglects the minimum investment requirement and at the same time meets the immediate needs of the majority to occupants who actually do not belong to the place.

 Availability of land for development at lower cost.

 Lack of effective land use control.


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