Some stakeholders in Enugu State including the Igbo Apex Socio-Cultural Group, Ohaneze Ndigbo Worldwide, have pledged to ensure successful conduct of the 2023 national census.
They made the pledge in Enugu on Wednesday during the National Population Commission (NPC) Stakeholders’ Summit ahead of the 2023 National Census with the theme “Getting The People Involved”.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that NPC is collaborating with the Enugu State Government in organising the summit, participated by Religious and Traditional Leaders, Labour Unions and Lawmakers.
Others are the Government and Security Agencies, UNICEF, NUJ, WHO and Local Government Chairmen amongst others.
The National Publicity Secretary of Ohaneze, Dr Alex Ogbonna said the call became necessary to avoid pressing the Igbo population down by denying them their fair share in the country.
According to him, the summit is important not to only Igbos but for the entire country, noting that without it, planning becomes difficult.
He stated that getting actual and credible census had become challenging to Nigeria since pre- Independence.
“If you look at 1952, 1963, 1964 and 1974 censuses, they were all rejected for not meeting the expectation of the people.
“The 1988 and 1991 heralded crisis which was detrimental to Igbo cause and we also discovered in 2006 the census was not accepted due to errors in the figures.
“So now they are talking about electronic census, I hope they will come out with better and credible result,” he said.
Ogbonnia said the problems associated with census in the country include federalism, porous borders across the country.
While allaying fears for successfully conducting the census, the national secretary said security agencies should ensure who were Nigerians and had them counted.
The Chairman Enugu State Traditional Ruler Council, HRH Lawrence Agubuzu, said NPC had demonstrated the importance of attaching everyone in the country in the forthcoming census in the country through the summit.
“Therefore, it is our responsibility to support the exercise to ensure it is successful and we in Enugu State especially the traditional rulers is in support of what they are doing,” Agubuzo said.
In a remark, the Chairman Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Enugu Chapter, Rev. Emmanuel Ositadimma said churches were ready to partner with NPC and make their structures available for the success of the census.
According to him, during counting, NPC should go to all the churches in Enugu and ensure that every Christian is counted.
Speaking in same view, the Chief Immam, Enugu Central Mosque, Alhaji Zulkarnain Saeed, appealed to NPC to include them when counting people in Enugu as they had became part of Enugu.
Saeed represented by Abdulaziz Adebayo however, expressed displeasure on the level of killing in the country, saying, “If we kill ourselves, who will NPC be counted.
“NPC should be truthful and avoid manipulating the figures obtained during the exercise so that they can be in good book of Allah,” he said.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Federal Commissioner, representing Enugu, Mr Ejike Eze said the summit was to broaden the state level support base for successful conduct of the 2023 census.
Eze added that the summit would help to create public awareness on the conduct of the census and provide platform for clarification and feedback.
“This is the first time the Commission is using digital technology for its census, so, we have embarked on massive sensitisation programme for the southeast people.
“We will continue to sensitise the people on the need to participate in the national census for the benefit of the zone,” Eze said.
In his goodwill message, Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State said the state would continue to support NPC to ensure successful census for the state next year.
Ugwuanyi represented by his Special Adviser on Information, Mr Steve Oruruo, said the state would continue to sensitise it’s citizens to get themselves counted to enable the state plan.
“Enugu is peaceful and we will continue to provide peaceful environment during and after the census,” Ugwuanyi said.
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), says it will contribute its quota by providing the Federal Government with data and evidence to help tackle insecurity in the country.
The Statistician-General of the Federation and Chief Executive Officer of the NBS, Prince Semiu Adeniran, said this on the sidelines of the 45th Annual Statistical Conference in Keffi on Thursday.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the conference has as its theme: ” Security Challenges in Nigeria and Associated Consequences: A Statistical Overview.
” Adeniran said the bureau was working on a new Crime and Security Survey in collaboration with the Nigerian Army, According to him, the survey is expected to commence in 2023. “It is going to be a household-based survey where we are going to visit a selected sample of households across the country to ask them about the security situation in their neighbourhood and their environment.
“We have quite some data available on security which we have provided for the Nigerian Army but that data is not national, it is only adopted in the North- East part of the country.
“So, we are planning to have a larger and national survey on crime and security.
“The idea of this initiative is to contribute to the solution of insecurity in the country by providing the government with important information and evidence that can assist in tackling the challenge.
” He said that apart from insecurity, the crime and security survey would also address the issue of victimisation and gender-based violence.
In his paper presentation titled: Consequences of Security Challenges on the National Statistical System in Nigeria, Adeniran said the spate of insecurity in the country had profound negative effects on the general macroeconomic and socioeconomic conditions in the country.
He said no sector or group of persons was immune from the effects of insecurity in the country, adding that it affected the statistical system both directly and indirectly.
“So, in direct terms, you are looking at the safety of lives and equipment, disruptions to the field processes which have significant financial implications and possible data quality issues, if not properly checked.
“The statistical system suffers indirectly also by its inability to produce adequate, reliable and timely statistics for proper policy design, implementation, and monitoring.
” The NBS boss said the bureau had taken some measures to address the issue of insecurity in the country, one of which includes adopting the use of technology.
“We established a call centre at the headquarters through which we now conduct phone surveys.
Using this platform, we can collect data in inaccessible and hard-to-reach areas when necessary.
” The statistician-general said other measures taken using technology to mitigate the effects of insecurity include remote data monitoring for quality assurance.
“Using digital Enumeration Area (EA) Maps with GPS coordinates, we can monitor the movement of field staff within the selected EAs and review their submissions while they are still in the EAs. “This has significantly reduced the need for physical monitoring from officers at the headquarters, and the entire fieldwork period can be observed remotely while ensuring the quality of the returns from the field.
” He said the bureau also engaged local community guides for its survey exercises, usually provided by the local communities, saying it had helped reduce the hostile reception faced by the fieldworkers when they go to communities for data collection.
” We have also introduced a new module on security awareness into our survey training, which was designed by professional security personnel.
“This model provides information that will assist the fieldworkers on how to be conscious and aware of any environment they enter to collect data, and how to approach security issues when they arise in the field.
” The Chairman, National Population Commission (NPC), Nasir Kwarra in his presentation said the spate of insecurity had affected preparations for the 2023 Census like other sectors of our national life.
Kwarra, represented by the Director-General, NPC, Mr Ojogun Osifo, however, said the insecurity had not stopped the march toward the next census.
He said due to insecurity, the commission had not been able to demarcate two out of the 774 LGAs in the country.
“The two LGAs affected are Birni Gwari in Kaduna State, occasioned by cases of banditry and Abadam in Borno State due to Boko Haram insurgency.
“Following consultations with the respective State Governments and the security agencies, the demarcation of these LGAs has commenced and the exercise will be concluded well ahead of the 2023 Census.
” Kwarra said that with proper planning and operational deployment as done in successive elections, the census could be conducted in Nigeria.
“Our optimism in this regard is reinforced by the patriotic roles of the traditional institutions and security agencies.
“They have provided adequate security cover for the Enumeration Area Demarcation, first and second pretests and trial census in their various communities during the exercise.
Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia has said that his administration will provide the support necessary for the success of the 2023 Population and Housing Census in the state.
Ikpeazu made the promise in Umuahia on Thursday during the Abia stakeholders’ summit on the upcoming exercise.
He said that the outcome of the census would help “to further strengthen the State Government’s planning metrics”.
He said that the outcome of the exercise would help the government to work with empirical data of the population and housing units in the state.
“These figures have relevance across indices of human and infrastructural development planning.
“There is no gainsaying the fact that an accurate population and housing census is a condition-precedent for proper development planning,” the governor said.
He argued that over the years, census in the country had “been dogged by controversy over the accuracy of figures assigned to states.
“Most states have disputed the figures while some have taken steps to conduct their own exercise,” he said.
Ikpeazu, represented by his Chief of Staff, Mr Okey Ahaiwe, said that the summit “signposts the seriousness the State Government attaches to the exercise”.
He hoped that the meeting would help to minimise such controversies in the 2023 census.
He opined that “the more people are involved in a process, the less likely it is that they will question the outcome.
“This is why we empanelled a high-level state census committee to coordinate our participation in the exercise.
“The committee is to ensure that all relevant stakeholders are properly carried along so as to ensure a credible and acceptability outcome.
“Our administration places high premium on data for planning purposes.
“It is for this reason that we collaborated with the Partnership Initiative in the Niger Delta to produce a long-term plan for Abia. “The document is a testament to our attention to data-driven planning,” Ikpeazu said.
He, therefore, charged all the relevant stakeholders to cooperate fully with the committee “to ensure a successful outcome of their assignment”.
The governor thanked the National Population Commission (NPC) for working closely with the state to ensure a seamless exercise.
He also commended the members of the committee for their dedication and hard work.
He charged “all hands to be on deck as we carry out this all-important exercise”.
Chief Johnny Nwabisi, the Abia Federal Commissioner in NPC, thanked the governor for his commitment to ensure a successful and result-based census in Abia. He expressed delight over the setting up of a committee which, he said, would help to sensitise and mobilise the citizenry to present themselves for the exercise.
He expressed disappointment with the ugly experience encountered by the commission in some parts of the state during the trial census.
Nwabisi warned the people of the South-East not to allow themselves to be misled by any group of agitators.
He said that the 2023 census offered a golden opportunity for the zone to have its population accurately enumerated.
He recalled that the population of the area was grossly under enumerated in the 2006 census, due to the disruptions by the separatist Movement for the Sovereign State of Biafra.
Nwabisi argued that the request for the UN to conduct a referendum for the South-East could only be realised after the actual population of the zone had been ascertained.
Stakeholders at the well-attended meeting, including traditional rulers, individuals and groups, were unanimous in their demand for an accurate head count in Abia to ascertain the true population of the citizenry.
They emphasised that accurate Abia population data would translate to improved infrastructure, revenue and other development indices in the state.
Other speakers at the event included the Chairman, Abia Council of Traditional Rulers, Eze Joseph Nwabeke, the state Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Chief Uchenna Obigwe, Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Emmanuel Agonmuo, and representatives of the state chapter of the National Council of Women Societies, amongst others.
Gov. Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State says population data is essential to development planning and any government desirous of achieving developmental strides needs to know the number of people requiring certain amenities.
Ganduje stated this while addressing a Stakeholders’ Meeting on the 2023 population and housing census with the theme: “2023 Census-Getting People Involved” held at the Government House Kano.Represented by his deputy, Alhaji Nasiru Gawuna, Ganduje said population is a critical factor in nation building and attaining sustainable development.
“The people are both the agents and beneficiaries of the development process, therefore knowledge of national population in terms of size, distribution and socio-economic characteristics is required for planning purposes making the conduct of census one of the essential governance activities.
“We are delighted that the deployment of state of the art technology by the Commission to ensure the conduct of the first fully digital census in Nigeria will enhance the data quality,” he said.
He said the Kano state government requires new data to drive the implementation of the recently launched revised National Policy on Population for sustainable development and other government policies in all human endeavour.
According to him, Kano has the conviction that the National Population Commission (NPC) has the capacity and is ready to deliver to the country a reliable, credible and acceptable census come 2023.Ganduje assured the commission of the state government’s support and commitment in ensuring that the 2023 census exercise was successful and conducted for the benefit of all.
The Federal Commissioner NPC, Kano, Alhaji Ismail Lawal -Sulaiman said that the goal of the census was to conduct acceptable and credible exercise that would be transformational and meet the international standard.
“The need for engagement with the stakeholders to get their feedback on the instruments and to enrich the process.
In attendance were Members of the Kano State Executive Council, traditional rulers, women and youth groups, development partners and civil society organisations.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that according to Kano state official website as at 2020, the Kano state population is estimated currently at 20 million people.
Gov. Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State has commended the National Population Commission (NPC) for its commitment to ensure a successful population census in 2023.The governor gave the commendation on Wednesday in Lafia at Nasarawa stakeholders Summit on 2023 Population and Housing Census.
He said the successes recorded so far in preparation for the census were pointers to the commission’s resolve to do a credible job that would be acceptable by Nigerians.
According to Sule, the success of activities leading to the population census such as trial census, enumeration area demarcation as well as constant engagement of stakeholders are confirmation of the level of preparedness by the commission to ensure a credible census.
“Population is a critical factor toward sustainable development and any nation desirous of development must know the accurate population to enable proper planning and execution of the plans.
“No nation desirous of development relies on estimated population, because such estimate often ignores demography that can only be revealed by census,” Sule added.
The governor said that Nasarawa needed the census as the state’s population as captured in the 2006 census was highly inaccurate.
“The population of Karu Local Government Area alone should be more that what was captured for the entire state in 2006,” he said.
He assured of his administration’s continuous support to the commission toward the success of the 2023 population census exercise.
In his remarks, Mr Silas Agara, Federal Commissioner representing Nasarawa State at the Commission, commended the Federal Government for approving the conduct of the population census in 2023.Agara also thanked the state government and others stakeholders for their support to the commission towards the success of the exercise.
The federal commissioner assured Nigerians that the commission was ready and would do its best to deliver a credible and acceptable census in line with the United Nations standards in 2023. .
Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi has pleaded with the National Population Commission (NPC) to provide accurate demographic and other data hat can help the state to get support it needs for development in the 2023 national census.
He claimed on Wednesday in Lokoja that more than one million “people transit through the state monthly, thereby putting pressure on its limited resources.
According to him, accurate demographic data arising from the 2023 national census can be used to create funds to bear the pressure of using the state as a transit route.
During the national stakeholders summit on 2023 Population and Housing Census organised by NPC in Lokoja, Bello observed that the state is strategic, sharing boundaries with 10 states, including the Federal Capital Territory.
Represented by his deputy, Chief Edward Onoja, he said that of recent Kogi had witnessed massive influx of new people in search of a place to live or do business in the state.
He claimed that people chose the state to live because it had the capacity to guarantee security of lives and property with a fast-growing commercial environment.
“The United Nations, through some of its agencies, has consistently and insistently declared that Lokoja is projected to be the third fastest growing African continent city between 2020 and 2025. “The Wall Street Journal which expanded on the UN findings, says the population of Lokoja metropolis will grow 78 per cent in the next decade, quicker than every other sizable town in the world.
“In Kogi today, we are catering for no fewer than six million citizens and we have to provide for more than million citizens per month, who transit through our state on their way to and fro other parts of the country.
“This has put an inordinate amount of stress on our facilities, making both maintenance and replacement excessively frequent and prohibitively expensive.
“It is our strong expectation that the next census will not only represent this phenomenon accurately, but will go a long way in granting us the special status we need to keep Kogi safe,” he pleaded.
He noted that another national census in 2023 was imperative to produce a new set of demographic and socio-economic data that would provide the basis for national planning and sustainable development.
According to him, governments at all levels rely on population data to activate and sustain development, especially the provision of basic amenities such as electricity, water, schools, housing, health and educational facilities, among others.
Mr Nasir Isa-Kwarra, the Chairman, NPC then assured Nigerians and development partners the commission’s commitment to the conduct a credible and acceptable census that would be transformational and meet international standards.
Represented by Kogi NPC Federal Commissioner Prof. Isa Jimoh, the chairman said “the 2023 census will be fully digital and the commission has deployed technology to conduct the exercise and enhance data quality.
“In the 2023 census, everyone will be counted in the right way, at the right place and time, and for the benefits of all persons resident in Nigeria.
“This is what informed this summit with the hope of getting the support of all stakeholders here to join hands with NPC in realising the dream of providing the needed demographic data that will facilitate and place our country on the pedestal of sustainable development.
Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has called on all stakeholders in the state to support the National Population Commission (NPC) towards the 2023 Census for the success of the exercise.
AbdulRazaq, represented by Prof. Mamman Jibril, the Secretary to the State Government, made the appeal during a State Stakeholders Summit organised by the commission on Monday in Ilorin.
“Conducting a population census is a national event and the ultimate responsibility of every stakeholder is to join hands to work for its successful conduct,” he said.
The governor said that the over reaching vision of the 2023 census was to produce accurate, reliable and acceptable , also an inclusive and user-friendly census data.
“The forthcoming Nigerian Population and Housing Census must be seen as a defining national and global agenda worthy of support by all stakeholders.
“This summit therefore is a necessary second step towards mobilising state and grassroots support for the exercise.
“I appeal to all government agencies, traditional and religious leaders, organised private sector, civil society organisations and the general public to extend maximum cooperation to NPC,” he said.
Alhaji AbdulRazak Gidado, the Federal Commissioner, Kwara NPC, said that census provide Nigerians with unique opportunity to proactively engage the good people of Kwara and get some positive feedback, invaluable cooperation and support.
Gidado stated that the Enumeration Area Demarcation had been fully carried out in all the Local Government Areas of thr state.
He said that the consistent support of the present administration was a source of inspiration to the entire commission to deliver a credible and reliable census.
“I call on all stakeholders here to join hands with NPC in realising the dream of providing the needed demographic data that will facilitate and place our country on the pedestal of sustainable development,” he said.
Earlier, the state Director of NPC, Malam Saheed Adebayo, said that the Commission had undertaken several activities, beginning with the Area Demarcation Exercise across the federation.
Also, the Pretests and Trial Census, in which the instruments for the actual exercise were put to rigorous and exhaustive test.
“The Commission will be conducting the first Digital Census in Nigeria with a view of giving Nigerians reliable, accurate and acceptable data,” he said.
The director recalled that the National Stakeholders Summit had taken place in Abuja in August, President Muhammadu Buhari gave an address and declared it open.
Adebayo stated that it was an effort to ensure general awareness of the exercise, adding that the summit had been scaled down to all the states of the federation and Kwara inclusive.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that many traditional rulers in the state attended the summit, including representatives from all the security agencies in the state, including other respected persons.
Alhaji Ahmad Aliyu, the All Progressives Congress (APC) Governorship Candidate in Sokoto State, has urged party stakeholders to sustain commitments toward ensuring the party’s victory in 2023 general elections.
Aliyu, who was represented by his running mate, Alhaji Idris Gobir, made the call at a meeting of party stakeholders from Sokoto North Senatorial zone in the state.
He expressed appreciation to the APC leaders in the state, stressing that their commitments are encouraging in movements.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the district comprised eight local government areas of Sokoto North, Sokoto South, Wamakko, Binji, Tangaza, Kware, Silame and Gudu. According to him, the stakeholders commitment has become a source of encouragement to loyalists and the leadership of APC in the state and the country at large.
“We have experienced a lot of challenges after the 2019 elections mostly at the local government, now we committed to ensure party’s victory,” he said.
The candidate further called on APC supporters to canvass for more votes as the electioneering campaign will soon start.
The Minister of Police Affairs, Alhaji Maigari Dingyadi, said the meeting was convened to enhance the already existing cordial relationship with the party’s stakeholders at the grassroot.
“This is also an avenue for us to discuss our strategies toward ensuring peaceful campaign as well as free, fair and credible 2023 general elections in our state and the country at large.
“Our main objective in APC is to ensure the best future for Nigerians and lead a governance that will facilitate more developments in the society.
“As such we should continue to remain closer to our people and enlighten them on our struggle for Sokoto state and Nigeria,” he said.
Also speaking, Alhaji Chiso Dattijo, the Commissioner representing Sokoto state in the National Population Commission (NPC), thanked the stakeholders for their loyalty to the party.
Dattijo restated that the leaders and elders of APC in the state would continue to ensure the success of the party at all levels.
Earlier, Alhaji Isa Achida, the state APC Chairman, said the purpose for the gathering was to appreciate the LGA leaders and further motivate them on the party’s struggle ahead of the 2023 general elections.
NAN reports that party representatives from the LGAs highlighted their various successes at the grassroots level and expressed loyalty to the party toward winning the 2023 general elections.
The National Population Commission (NPC) says it has registered 191,222 births in Gombe State in the past one year.
NPC Fdederal Commissioner in the state, Alhaji Abubakar Mohammed said this on Thursday in Gombe at a news conference to mark the 2022 Civil Fegistration and Vital Dtatistics (CRVS).
The theme of the event is: “Harnessing Coordination, Country Leadership and Ownership to Strengthen Civil Registration and Vital Statistics System, A vehicle for counting Everyone’’.
CRVS Day is being celebrated on Aug. 10, aimed at enhancing advocacy on the importance of civil registration and vital statistics.
According to him, the number of the births registered by the commission represents 76 per cent of the newborn babies during the year.
He urged parents to present their babies and children under the age of 17 for free registration, adding that those that attained 18 years would pay N2,000 to obtain attestation certificate.
Mohammed said the CRVS Day is also designed to increase awareness on the importance of registration of vital events particularly births and deaths.
According to him, the registration provides legal identity from birth to death of all persons, and the realisation of key human and civil rights.
“These rights including right to participate in society and economy and right to access social services,’’ he said.
He reiterated the commission’s commitment to collaborate with multi sectoral partners towards building integrated system, to identify management of eco-system and increased demand for CRVS system.
Mr Mathias Schmale, the UN Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, says the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) depends on availability of fundamental data on population size and growth.
The information is in a statement issued by the Media Associate of the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) in Nigeria, Hajiya Kori Habib in Abuja on Friday.
Habib stated that Schmale made the remark during Partners Meeting on the 2023 Population and Housing Census and official launch of the Census Development Partners Forum in Abuja.
The media associate added that the resident coordinator was represented at the meeting by Ms Ulla Mueller, the Resident Representative of UNFPA Nigeria.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Nigeria is getting ready for a housing and population census in April 2023 being coordinated by National Population Commission (NPC), the UNFPA in Nigeria and partners, 17 years after the last census held in 2006.She quoted the UN official as saying “the fact that this census is the first digital census in Nigeria, a census that uses various innovative approaches, technologies and software, makes the theme of today’s meeting — Supporting a Transformational Census Process in Nigeria — very appropriate.
“This is indeed a census that will be transformative for Nigeria.
”Schmale said that the ongoing 2023 census process undertaken by the Federal Government would play a vital role in producing official statistics and fundamental information for measuring progress toward the SDGs indicators in Nigeria and beyond.
He added that the attainment of the UN SDGs also depends on the country’s data of population distribution and their characteristics.
He, therefore, called for technical and financial support from partners “to sustain the country’s efforts toward conducting a much-needed and asked for census.
“A census that will make data available for evidence-based programming and policy making, improve the understanding of population dynamics and inform socio-economic development initiatives.
“The information will be useful for present and future governments of Nigeria and for the international community and for tracking progress towards the SDGs.”He reiterated the commitment of the UN to support development efforts and building a Nigeria where no one is left behind.