Census is on Track – Government, Partners Assure Liberians amid Uncertainties

MONROVIA – The Government of Liberia and International Partners have reaffirmed their commitment to the successful conduct of the 2022 National Population and Housing Census by the Government which runs from11 to 22 November 2022.

In a joint press release issued late Friday, the Liberian Government and its partners including the UN, World Bank, the Embassy of Sweden, and USAID said the population and housing census is among the most complex and massive peacetime exercises a nation can undertake; adding that a census, as mandated within the Constitution, involves the complete enumeration of the population in a country.

The census, according to the Government and its partners,  generates a wealth of data, including numbers of people, their spatial distribution, age, and sex structure, as well as their living conditions and other key socioeconomic characteristics. These data are critical for good governance, policy formulation, development planning, crisis prevention, mitigation and response, social welfare program and business market analyses, among others.

They said: “Given this, the International Community wishes to encourage all not to politicize or disrupt the ongoing 2022 National Population and Housing Census. We have observed with dismay calls by some elements within the country to boycott the Census. Despite some initial challenges, the Census is now on track and has commenced as of 11 November 2022.”

Any further disruption, they warned, “would lead to delays in, or possible abortion, of the Census which will benefit no one. The Partners, led by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), are providing technical and financial support to the Liberia Institute of Statistics and Geo-Information Services, the agency of the Government with the authority to conduct Census taking, to ensure the census house listing and enumeration is completed within the timeframe of 11- 22 November 2022 as announced by the Government.

The release further noted that the International Partner support is aimed at ensuring that the 2022 National Population and Housing Census is of high quality and upholds international principles and standards. The unique advantage of the census is that it represents the entire statistical universe, down to the smallest geographical/ administrative area of a country or region.

“The Government of Liberia and its International partners wish to appeal to all citizens, residents, and visitors to peacefully support the ongoing 2022 National Population and Housing Census by welcoming the Census Enumerators to their homes and facilities and 2 allow them to do their work.”

“Remember that Census takes place every 10 years and the process gives an individual the opportunity to be heard and counted. So let’s make this Census count.”

The census has been marred by a series of controversies that began with scathing allegations of corruption by an official of LISGIS against his colleagues, followed by the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission’s indictment of the current officials and the chaotic census enumerators’ recruitment process.

The release was signed by Mr. Samuel D. Tweh, Jr., Minister of Finance and Development, Mr. Niels Scott UN Resident Coordinator Ms. Bidisha Pillai, Resident Representative UNFPA, Mr. Khwima Nthara, Country Manager World Bank, Mr. Urban Sjöström Ambassador Kingdom of Sweden and Mr. Jim Wright Mission Director USAID.

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