THE NIGERIAN JOURNAL OF SOCIOLOGY AND ANTHROPOLOGY
Volume 12, No. 1, (2014)
Care and Support for the Elderly in Nigeria: A Review
Judith Ifunanya Ani
Department of Sociology University of Ibadan Ibadan
This paper presents a review of works on care and support for the aged which is apt for current academic and public policy discourse in Nigeria. The major focus explicated in this review include the concept of care and support, overview of ageing, features and problems of ageing, nature and sources of care and support, the extent to which the elderly depend on their children/extended family, work and old age. It is evident from the review that the traditional norms on care and support for the elderly in Nigeria are waning. It also showed a dearth of public policy on ageing in Nigeria which perhaps could be attributed in part to the young population structure of the country irrespective of the imminent quantum leap of the elderly population in the near future. Despite the decline in traditional norms, the majority of the elderly continue to depend on their children for care and support. The explanations of the decline are attributed to some theoretical viewpoints, including disengagement and modernization theories, and the political economy perspective. This review concludes that there is an urgent need for public policy on ageing in Nigeria to avert the inevitability of poverty and other corollary to it. The policy nonetheless should also be gender-sensitive.
Keywords: elderly, care and support, public policy, pension scheme, retirement