2020 census will help assess country’s development – Wina

Vice President Inonge Wina says the 2020 census will provide indicators for assessment of the country’s progress towards regional and global development frameworks such as the Africa agenda 2063 and sustainable development goals.

And Vice-President Wina says the 2020 census of population and housing will provide a basis for undertaking accurate electoral delineation and voter’s registration throughout the country.

Speaking during the stakeholders meeting with co-operating partners on the 2020 census in Lusaka, Thursday, Vice President Wina said government would ensure that the activity is successfully and timely implemented.

“As we have heard, a census of population and housing is a major statistical undertaking that involves considerable investment of the country’s public resources. The government realises that the census of population and housing is the cornerstone of the national statistics. The government of the Republic of Zambia is committed to ensuring that this important activity is successfully and timely implemented. Zambia has maintained a programme of decennial censuses (conducted every 10 years) and a regular programme of household surveys during inter-censual periods that provide data on population on a consistent and continuous basis. The 2020 census will therefore be the sixth national census conducted in Zambia after the 1969, 1980, 1990, 2000 and 2010 censuses. Our consistency in undertaking censuses has enabled the availability of information necessary for informed planning and eventual monitoring and evaluation of development programmes at all levels,” Vice-President Wina said.

“We all know that the data that comes from the population and housing census is not only essential for social and economic planning but is also critical for setting statistical and administrative area boundary benchmarks that are necessary for facilitating among other things research, electoral processes and service provision to the people of Zambia. Because of their broad coverage data from population census has positive impact on economic growth and development as it provides relevant, timely and reliable baseline official statistics required for ensuring development planning, targeting of resources and accountability. This in turn promotes good economic governance. In addition to providing useful indicators for the evaluation of the Seventh National Development Plan (7NDP) and vision 2030, the 2020 census will also provide indicators for assessment of the country’s progress towards regional and global development frameworks such as the Africa agenda 2063 and sustainable development goals (SDGS).”

And Vice president Wina says the 2020 census of population and housing will provide a basis for undertaking accurate electoral delineation and voter’s registration throughout the country.

“You are all aware that my government will be conducting general elections in 2021. In this regard, the 2020 census of population and housing will provide a basis for undertaking accurate electoral delineation and voters registration throughout the country. Therefore, it is important that the 2020 census is properly executed to inform the 2021 electoral process. A census by its’ nature is a huge and costly undertaking that requires concerted efforts by all the development players. The census operation is intense, and its undertaking has a number of components which can be summarised into 3 major components namely; pre-census activities (preparatory stage), main census activities (data collection) and the post census activities (evaluation, analysis and dissemination). The success of the 2020 census will therefore depend on the commitment and support from all of us here,” she said.

“As usual, my government shall always remain grateful for your support towards the 2020 census including, timely disbursement of committed resources. Therefore, the controlling officer and Central Statistical Office (CSO) management have a duty to demonstrate our gratitude through prudent management of census resources. At this point, I would like to acknowledge the support my government has continued to get from UNFPA on virtually all census undertakings in Zambia. Currently the UNFPA has a country programme with the CSO and the activities on that programme include some 2020 census activities which they have already started working on with the CSO. With the new world order of conducting e-censuses, the UNFPA regional office is also making arrangements with some countries to share some data collection resources. For example there are discussions for Zambia to use the data collection tablets that UNFPA has provided to Malawi once our neighbour conclude their census undertaking this year. Such initiatives will go a long way in relieving the country of some financial stress.”

She urged cooperating partners to support the 2020 census in whichever way they could for the program to be successfully implemented.

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