This study adopts the principles that underpin participatory development communication in order to highlight the ideology that guides oil corporations’ development communication practices and strategies in Nigeria. The study specifically examines the usage of Global Memorandums of Understanding (GMoUs) by oil firms to engage people in community-based development initiatives. Given Shell and Chevron’s stranglehold in onshore, shallow, and deep-water exploration and development in Nigeria, 16 oil-producing localities in their operational zones were chosen at random for the study. The study’s design was cross-sectional and drew from survey procedures. 400 respondents were selected through a multistage selection approach from the study’s population for the purposes of data collection and analysis. The study found that although indigenes of the Niger Delta are aware of the GMoUs programmes, they lack the knowledge to take part in them. Thus, the Niger Delta indigenous people claim that the GMoUs programmes are self-serving and need to be carefully adapted to satisfy the desire of the people for bottom-up induced development. The study suggests that development communication experts be involved in the conception and implementation of the ideas because the GMoU model, which oil companies adopted, was flawed in its conception due to a potential lack of sufficient literature review for development agents to gain the understanding needed to guide implementation.
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