By Vincent Ujumadu
THE National Population Commission, NPC has commenced trial census in seven communities in Idemili South local government area of Anambra State as part of preparations for the proposed 2023 national census.
Idemili South is the local government selected for the South East and seven communities in the area namely, Alor, Nnobi, Nnokwa, Awka Etiti, Oba, Akwukwu and Ojoto are hosting the trial exercise.
The NPC Commissioner in charge of Anambra State, Sir Chidi Ezeoke , at a news briefing in Awka yesterday said a total of 1277 people were recruited for the trial census, adding that 1130 were enumerators, 116 were supervisors , while 31 were placed on the reserve.
Ezeoke explained that for the 2023 census, many international donor agencies and governments would assist Nigeria, noting that more than one million people would be recruited for the actual exercise.
He said: “Census is a very capital intensive exercise and the federal government cannot fund it alone. That is why the federal government gets assistance from international donor agencies such as United Nations, including United Nations Fund for Population Activities, UNFPA, United States Agency for International Development, USAID, and others.
“For government funding, so far so good and we hope that before the commencement of the main census next year, more funds would be made available to the Commission to ensure a smooth exercise.
“These international agencies usually like to support census because other countries and their agencies want to be working with correct facts and figures from Nigeria.
“It is embarrassing when we want to talk about the population of Nigeria and we say about a certain figure. So we want to be part of history making by ensuring that we conduct a reliable and accurate census for the country.”
He said the Commission is learning a lot of things from the trial process, adding that such issues like hacking of the NPC site, substitution of recruited enumerators and supervisors and people who want to do all sorts of things to undermine the process, are being identified and corrected.