By Christian ABURIME
The Governor of Anambra State, Professor Charles Chukwuma Soludo, CFR, has tasked the National Population Commission on providing accurate data as a panacea for effective planning.
Governor Soludo was speaking when he received a delegation from the Commission who paid him a courtesy visit at the Government House, Awka.
Chairman of the National Population Commission, Hon. Isa Kwarra led the delegation comprising of Commissioners and Directors of the NPC.
The visit became imperative to solicit the state government support, in lieu of the digital housing and National Population Housing Census exercise billed for April, 2023.
Governor Soludo noted that statistics is everything, and remains the basic requirement for effective planning for development
Said the Governor; “If you can’t measure it, you can’t change it! Without data, you can’t plan.
He reiterated the significance of the Commission and the imperative of a full population demographics and not just stating the total number of a location especially for a unique state like Anambra which is estimated to have over 50% of its indigenous population living outside of the state.
“The transit population of Ndi Anambra is more than those domiciled in the state. “The 50% population is just an estimate. We need concrete numbers to plan for the surging population that will arrive the state during the festive period and also plan for traffic control, and for several other social sectors, etc”.
Governor Soludo further stated that to plan for tomorrow, for purely planning purposes, not just for only residents of Anambra State but also Ndi Anambra living outside of the state; basic data for age population, education, qualification, residential address, persons living with disability, income level, household survey, among others, are basic requisite for planning. He however noted regrettably, that such basic data needed to disaggregate are sadly unavailable.
According to Governor Soludo; “we are committed to supporting the next population census exercise so as to ensure it is successful with a less error margin.
“It would be delightful if the National Population Census can provide the total number of Ndi Anambra living in the 35 states of the Federation so that we can be able to plan for basic infrastructure”. Governor further said
He assured of maximum security and provision of basic logistics in terms of sensitisation, mobilization, personal and professional assistance, during the exercise.
In his remark, the chairman of the National Population Commission, Hon Isa Kwarra, pleaded with Governor Soludo to uphold Anambra state as the light of the nation, reeling out the intensified efforts made so far by the Commission as they prepare for the national count.
“We’ve commenced pre-test trial census exercise using Idemili South LGA. The specific objectives will be to assess the quality of the enumeration area maps that had been created, determine demographic and geographical changes that might have occurred and their implications, determine feasibility for house numbering, determine correlation between estimated population and pre-test enumerated population, determine educational qualification for 2023 census enumerators, determine estimated workload on enumerators and finally, determine logistics support required from States and LGAs”; he concluded.
Secretary to the State Government, Professor Solo Chukwulobelu, Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr. Ernest Ezeajughi, Head of Service, Barrister Theodora Igwegbe, Chief of Protocol and Deputy Chief of Staff, Mr. Chinedu Nwoye Glamour among others attended the event.