Cletus Mushanawani Senior Writer
Zimbabwe will use mobile devices for mapping and data collection during the 2022 enumeration process, an exercise which is expected to chew $1,4 billion.
Addressing a Press conference in Harare on Friday, Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency director general, Mr Taguma Mahonde said the Fifth Population and Housing Census will be conducted in August 2022.
“In order to successfully plan for economic and social development and carry out administrative activity or scientific research, it is necessary to have reliable and detailed data on the size, composition, distribution and other benchmark statistics on the population.
“The census provides this much needed information. However, the census is very costly to undertake and this is why it is conducted every 10 years. Thorough and careful planning is required to ensure that the programme is implemented in an effective and efficient manner. Prior to conducting the Population and Housing Census, it is a requirement that a cartographic census mapping exercise be carried out,” said Mr Mahonde.
“We are already doing the mapping exercise where we divide every ward into enumeration areas. This is done physically by people on the ground. Treasury is funding operations of the pre-enumeration phase, while the United Nations Population Fund assisted with vehicles. The Ministry of Finance and Economic Development will soon convene a conference for development partners for them to find areas where they can come on board and assist.”
He said the 2019 Cartographic Census Mapping exercise comes at a time when globally, as per United Nations recommendations for the 2020 round of Population and Housing censuses, most countries are shifting towards the use of mobile devices in data collection.
“Given this background, Zimbabwe is focusing on following the global trend of the use of mobile devices for mapping and data collection during census enumeration,” he said.
The population of Zimbabwe on August 18, 2012 was 12 973 808 and estimates show that the population is now around 17 million people. On the objectives of carrying out the census mapping exercise, Mr Mahonde said this was meant to establish that all areas were covered and reduce the possibility of under or over-enumeration due to overlaps.
“All information collected during the census mapping exercise will be highly confidential and used for statistical purposes only,” said Mr Mahonde.
“It needs to be stressed that the census is a national project that requires the support of everyone. Although ZIMSTAT is the main implementing agency, the support of all Government ministries, private sector, civil society organisations, research and training institutions is vital for conducting a successful census. The public is urged to co-operate with our field mappers during data collection for this very important exercise. Positive contribution is very much welcome as thus ensures the successful accomplishment of this mammoth task.”
Post-independence population censuses were conducted in the month of August 1982, 1992, 2002 and 2012 in accordance with the Census and Statistics Act which stipulates that a national census shall be carried out every 10 years.