Seventeen years after the national census, Nigeria will conduct another exercise from 29 March running for four days. That will be about two weeks – precisely 18 days – after the last set of general elections (the governorship and house of assembly) is conducted on 11 March.
Announcing the population census date, the Chairman of the National Population Commission (NPC), Mallam Nasir Isa Kwarra promised a reliable process that cannot be rigged.
According to him, a platform has been set up where young Nigerians can apply to work as ad-hoc workers, and facilitator training has already begun.
He said that, because the ad-hoc personnel will be hired from the areas where they live and earn their living, the hiring process will be local.
After meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Abuja on Friday, the NPC Chairman told State House reporters that the exercise would be different from past ones marked by controversies since cutting-edge technology would be applied this time.
He said that the Commission would make use of Global Positioning System and satellite images, noting that every building in the country has already been coded for the purpose.
Kwarra said the demarcation of enumerations areas has been completed.
Against the worrisome security situation in parts of the country, he hoped that the exercise can be conducted smoothly in the areas affected.
“By 29 March to 2 April, our staff will be in the field enumerating people”, said Kwarra.
He said that the technological tools to be deployed would be able to code buildings and landmass, detailing information such as location, landscapes, etc.
He also noted that non-Nigerians would be counted if they are in the country at the time of the exercise.
The Federal Government set out N40 billion for the National Population in this year’s Appropriation Act.