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LISGIS Enumerators Seize Census Tools For DSA

Some enumerators of the Liberia Institute for Statistics and Geo-Information Services (LISGIS) in the ongoing national census have seized census tools they have worked with or used unless they are paid their Daily Sustenance Allowance known as DSA.But the statistics house and its international partners said that, that is to the contrary to the contract signed before carrying out the work, therefore those involved must return those equipment.
As a result of the above-mentioned, some of the enumerators who claimed to have completed their assignment in various communities nationwide and have not allegedly been paid their DSA have absconded with those gadgets but they are been sought after.
Some 17, 000 locals ranging from secondary school leavers to terminal degree holders were recruited and trained for the 10-day exercise which began on a shaky note on Friday, November 11, 2022.
The project is owned by Liberia but hugely funded including technical support from the international partners like the United Nations Systems, United States Agency for International Development (USAID), World Bank and European Union among others.
However, insiders who are familiar with the work of LISGIS but do not want to be named told this paper that the enumerators are dishonest in character instead of being nationalistic.
The sources said there was one recruitment but divided into two segments of enumerators and supervisors for the exercise. This followed the completion of the geographical-mapping survey of the entire country by LISGIS’s workers since last year.
In the contract signed with the contractors, the sources said for their workmanship each enumerator is to receive US$250. 00 and supervisor US$300.00 each for the 10 working days meaning US$25 .00 per day.
Additionally, the sources said US$50.00 was given them as sitting or training fee and that of transport fare plus US$25. 00 as charging fee for their gadgets (equipment) assigned them to carry out the work.
Therefore, the sources continued each enumerator and supervisor supposed to receive or have received the sum of US$325.00 and US$375.00 each as payment for the 10-days work as far as compared to the 2008 national census when each enumerator was paid US$100.00.
Regrettably, the sources said some of the enumerators who despite their names being in the database collected the payment or DSA plus the equipment but failed to perform the task assigned them thereby absconding without going in the field.
Those recruited as replacement for the absconders’ names were not in the database from the onset but were trained and deployed in the field for the exercise, those people will have to be paid by both the government (LISGIS) and its partners but will have to be verified.
These sources added that some of the gadgets have already been sold to marketers, state security personnel among others by some of the enumerators and not the supervisors because those tablets were only given to enumerators; however, some of those tablets have been retrieved and the rest are been sought for.
“What we know is that those equipment are being programmed with GPRS. Therefore, wherever they are taken or sold, we shall get them back. One of the tablets was recently retrieved from a police officer in the Matadi Housing Estate Community. It was sold to him by one of the enumerators,” sources alleged.
Those sources went further that those equipment were rented by the international partners from the Ghanaian government on behalf of Liberia for LISGIS’ use in the ongoing national census stating that as we speak, The Gambian government wants to use them for their work for which they are using same in Liberia.
“There were 17, 000 tablets for 17, 000 enumerators with one supervisor to 5 enumerators. Therefore, mathematically, one should be able to know the number of tablets that were given out,” the sources noted.
Meanwhile, LISGIS statisticians working on data collection in the ongoing national census are projecting the country’s population to be about 6.7 million rather than 3. 5 million in 2008 which was immediate post-war period.
They said it is known that long time from the date the geographical-mapping survey was carried out saw houses being marked in every village, town, clan, chiefdom, township, district and provincial capitals with numbers were completed since last year.
However, what is needed for the ongoing census has to do with the population’s living standard including level of education of each person counted whether lettered (degree holder), semi-lettered (school dropout) and unlettered (cannot read or write) nor speak English among others.
Honestly, the statisticians told this paper that the country’s population is between 6 and 7 million which shall be known next year when the result shall be announced for record.

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