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‘NPC ready to conduct digital Census’

The National Population Commission (NPC) is ready to carry out digital census in the country. This was confirmed as it received over 100, 000 electronic devices, Personal Digital Assistance (PDA) for the conduct of a successful and credible digital population and housing census.

Speaking at the hand-over of the device to the commission by Zinox Technologies in Lagos, the Chairman, NPC, Nasir Isa Kwarra, said the commission was adhering to the president’s Executive Order on local content as well as Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NITDA) Regulation on Local Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) in the procurement of the PDAs.

He said the electronic device housed the census questionnaire, as well as the maps that would direct the enumerators to the areas where they would conduct the census.

He said the devices, when provisioned with the forms, maps and other digital enhancement, would ensure that enumerators do not go beyond the area assigned to them to avoid ver-count, undercount, gap or overlap.

Kwarra also noted that with the devices, such as the mobile device management, the commission could monitor the enumerators on the field and ensure the data provided by Nigerians was secure and well- managed for their privacy.

“The geospatial resources that NPC has acquired will be deployed on the devices. This will ensure that all Nigerians are counted where they are and live. We will also be able to collect statistics on housing type and characteristics for better physical and social planning by government for the Nation.

“The homeless will be counted tied to their usual place of abode referenced with geo-coordinates, the special population: nomads, migrants, people in transit etc will be counted with geo-reference to where they are found at the time of the census.Everyone will be counted because all Nigerians count,” he said.

He expressed the commission’s confidence that data collection for future censuses and surveys would witness profound improvement as more persons will be able to utilise this equipment.

The NPC boss disclosed that the equipment would be useful for other national assignment after the conduct of the census including civil registration and vital statistics, as well as ensure data are available to other national and state level agencies that will require the PDAs for surveys and researches.

Also speaking, the Federal Commissioner, National Population Commission (NPC) for Lagos State, Mrs. Abimbola Salu-Hundeyin, said the demographic data gotten from the digital census system would help the country to develop.

She said this is the first time Nigeria will be having a digital census, noting that the decision to leverage heavily on technology is because the world has gone digital.

According to her the digital demographic data will be accurate, dependable and useable, noting that the information from the PDAs will be sent to the national server and then to the cloud.

The Chairman of Zinox Group, Leostan Ekeh, said the digital system has been built for integrity to record of excellent data.

He said the project has been implemented in other African countries and has recorded credible census data figures, adding that it is a privileged for the Federal Government to consider the company for the project.