The Inquirer is a leading independent daily newspaper published in Liberia, based in Monrovia. It is privately owned with a "good reputation".

Resource Constraints Affect NPHC In Liberia

By Bill W. Cooper
The Executive Director of the Liberia Institute of Statistics and Geo-Information Services (LISGIS), Prof. Francis Wreh has alarmed that the delay into the conduct of the long-awaited National Population and Housing Cencus (NPHC) is the result of limited resources.
He said that though there are working tools for the project, but due to resource constrains, the country has gone beyond the nationally stipulated decennial periodicity (every year) for the conduct of the NPHC as cherished under Article 39 of the 1986 Constitution.
Article 39 of the Constitution states that: The Legislature shall cause a census of the Republic to be undertaken after every ten years. In 2008, the government conducted the last NPHC, while citizens were anticipating that the next NPHC was to be in 2018 which marks the exact ten years that enshrined within the Constitution, but up-to present, the government is yet to conduct the NPHC as the stipulated time has already elapsed.
Addressing the Ministry of Information (MICAT) regular Thursday briefing, the LISGIS boss noted that a proclamation is now required from the Office of the President to the House of Legislature requesting a joint resolution authorizing the Executive Branch to conduct the Census at a specified data, preferably March 8, 2021, stressing that in their mind, the date will be ideal for several reasons.
“That date will afford the ample time needed to conduct a nationwide Geographic Planning System (GPS) that is expected to begin in early January, 2020, as it will last for a period of at least 10 months,” he emphasized.
Prof. Wreh indicated that sufficient time is also needed for the conduct of a Pilot Census which is again an acceptable practice for census undertakings and will inform the citizenry of the need for improvement and/or recalibration of the methods and tools to be used for the main enumeration.
He further stated that March is the heart of the dry season during which time road connectivity across the country is somewhat convenient for travels and for the development of field staff across the country, adding, “The selection of this month and data will also coincide with the period of the conduct of the 2018 Census.”
“Cognizant of a slight delay in the conduct of the NPHC within the usual 10 years interval, Liberia remains within 2020 Round of Population and Housing Censuses (2015-2024) as enshrined in the United Nations (UN) principles and recommendations for census taking,” the LISGIS ED averred.
Meanwhile, the LISGIS boss has said that LISGIS is now working with relevant authorities including the Office of the President to expeditiously remove all bottlenecks for an earnest kick-off of the major activities under the project, alluding that they now have a Census Management Team, Census Commissioners, Census Secretariat and other committees to support the project in various areas.

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