Aodoaseer Lawrence Kwaghga, Rhoda Dewua (PhD), Celestina Akpoghul, Terkaa Benedict Iornyagh, Member Josephine Oragbai, Eugene Tyokever Amaakaven


Background: The nexus between polygyny and religious practices and fertility levels has been contentious. These practices are common among Nigerians including the Tiv in Benue State. This study examined the effects of polygyny and religion on fertility transition among the Tiv in Benue State.

Objectives: The objectives were to explore the effects of religion and polygyny on fertility transition among the Tiv in Benue state.

Methodology: Multi stage sampling technique was used to select four hundred (400) respondents using Taro Yamane formula of sample size determination. Data for the study was elicited from questionnaire and key informant interview. Analysis of quantitative data was through descriptive and inferential statistics. Analysis of qualitative data was done using content analysis and direct quotation of responses.

Results: The study found a high prevalence rate of polygyny and religion with a high attitudinal support towards it by the people. This was associated with the high birthrate and high fertility within the study area.

Unique contribution: Polygyny and religion have significantly influenced fertility behaviour and transition among the Tiv

Conclusion: The high prevalence of polygyny and religion has resulted to high fertility.

Key recommendation: There is need to adopt culture based mechanisms such as mechanized farming, increased access to quality education, upgrading of local markets, girl-child education and mobilization and sensitization of the people using community based institutions to regulate fertility.   


Polygyny, Religion, Fertility behaviour/Transition, Tiv, Benue State

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