The Senate has charged President Muhammadu Buhari to issue a proclamation for the conduct of national population and housing census in 2018.
The Senate passed the resolution on Tuesday following a motion sponsored by Suleiman Hukunyi (APC-Kaduna), Gbolahan Dada (APC-Ogun), Kabiru Marafa (APC- Zamfara), Baba Garbai (APC-Borno) and Abubakar Danladi (PDP-Taraba).
In his lead debate, Mr. Hukunyi emphasized the need to expedite action and be pro-active about the census planned to hold in 2018.
The National Population Commission, on October 7, said national census would hold in 2018, and that the exercise would be fully digitized.
This was said during the visit of the Chief Statistician of United Kingdom Department for International Development, Neil Jackson, to the NPC headquarters in Abuja.
Nigeria last held census in 2006, and it was expected another one would hold this year 2016. But NPC said resources and time for proper planning and served as constraints, thereby putting the exercise off to 2018.
Planning for social and economic reasons has been an exercise in difficulty and uncertainty in Nigeria because of poor data. Different organizations, locally and internationally, have varying figures for Nigeria’s population.
In his contribution while the Senate took the motion on national census on Tuesday, Joshua Dariye (APC-Plateau) said Nigeria had faced problems due to poor statistical data.
John Enoh (PDP-Cross River), Immanuel Bwacha (PDP-Taraba) and Jibrin Barau (APC-Kano) also supported the motion.
In its resolution – apart from asking Mr. Buhari for a proclamation – the senate asked the president to ensure funds are available in the 2017 budget for the census slated for 2018.
To that effect, the Senate mandated the Office of the Secretary General of the Federation, the NPC, and the Ministry of Budget and National Planning to include the 2018 census in the 2017 budget.