A research has indicated that rural-urban migration has both positive and negative effects on the migrants in terms of marriage, child birth and education.
According to the research, migrants gain the respect of their families and friends because of financial transfers and investments in their villages.
The research conducted by the Migrating out of Poverty, (MOOP) Research Programme Consortium, Centre for Migration Studies, University of Ghana, Legon, said travelling to the cities is enough to gain public recognition and respect in the originating communities.
The research, “Migration into Cities in Ghana: An Analysis of Counterfactuals” was conducted in five migrant sending regions of Ghana, namely, Brong-Ahafo; Upper West; Upper East, Northern and Volta Regions.
It examined how migrants would have fared in the absence of migration and the data used was based on semi-structured interviews conducted with 68 recent rural-urban in-migrants in Accra and in-depth interviews with 10 of these migrants.
“Nonetheless, migration to the cities can lead to delayed marriages and childbirth. Migrants suffer emotionally and psychologically as they miss their families back home.
“Migrants suffer a loss of respect in the cities but, to the contrary, are highly revered in their originating communities,” it added.
It said a total of 61 migrants interviewed on effects of migration on relationship with spouse, 59 per cent said it has no effect on them, 21.3 per cent said it has negative effect on their marriages while 19.7 per cent said migration has positively enhanced their marriage.
The study also revealed that in most cases, migration has positively affected the education of migrant’s household members.
“About 62 per cent of respondents believed that migration enhanced the level of education of their children and or household members.
“In a minority of cases migration may negatively affect education of the migrants themselves but at the same time migration may positively affect education of their household members left behind,” it said.
The research therefore called for more research on the relationship between internal migration and social benefits/losses to document not only economic differences but also social benefits for a comprehensive understanding of the relationship between migration and poverty reduction.
It also suggested the need to produce quality statistics and better information on the potential gains and losses to would-be migrants.
That, the research said, would play a key role in preventing a mismatch between would-be migrants’ perception of migration and migration’s actual realities.
“Additionally, potential migrants could receive education on how to manage communication and financial transfers with the spouse left behind at origin to maintain quality of marriage. GNA