Date of Conferral





Public Policy and Administration


Richard J. DeParis


Vote-selling in Nigeria pervades and permeates the electoral space, where it has become the primary instrument of electoral fraud. Previous research has indicated a strong correlation between vote-buying and underinvestment and poor delivery of public services. There remains, however, a significant gap in the current literature regarding the nature of the relationship between vote-selling and the delivery of public services. The purpose of this study was to uncover voters' behaviors by investigating their common and lived experiences with respect to the provision of infrastructure, delivery of public services, and voting during elections. Using Bandura's theory of reciprocal determinism, the research explored the connection between environment and vote-selling. Data were collected through semistructured interviews with 10 individuals who participated in the most recent elections in Akoko North West Local Government, Ondo State, Nigeria. The data were analyzed using Moustakas's transcendental phenomenological process. Key findings suggest a reciprocal relationship between vote-selling, and infrastructure and public services. The study findings also revealed that vote-sellers' feel justified because vote-selling is perceived as a product of disappointment, lack of trust and voters' apathy, willingness to accept their own share of 'national cake,' and poverty. These findings are consistent with Bandura's proposition that people create the society and equally react to environmental factors. This study contributes to the existing literature and may enhance social change initiatives by improving the understanding of the connection between the provision of infrastructure and the delivery of public services and vote-selling.