Nigeria’s statistics bureau, World Bank introduce e-capturing process in data production

National Bureau of Statistics (NBS)

E-capturing will improve the quality and integrity of national statistics, NBS says
The National Bureau of Statistics, NBS, on Thursday unveiled plans to introduce electronic tools in capturing critical data in key statistical surveys and production in Nigeria.

The Statistician General of the Federation, Yemi Kale, said at the launch of the bureau’s second General Household Survey, GHS-Panel Data report, that the new tool is part of its corporate strategy to improve the quality and integrity of national statistics.

The GHS-Panel Wave II Data is a nationally representative survey that contains detailed information on household socio-economic and income generating activities.

Mr. Kale said the survey, conducted in collaboration with the World Bank, would pave the way for the use of the computer-assisted personal interview application devices, CAPI, for data capturing, effective from this year.

CAPI, Mr. Kale pointed out, would be used to update the National Census of Commercial and Industrial Businesses, NCCIB, and the National Agricultural Sample Census, NASC, in 2014. He said the project will be implemented for the first time in 20 years.

The use of CAPI devices used for the GHS pilot phase was carried out before the second round that was recently launched, in line with the NBS corporate implementation strategy.

The Statistician General said it was the success recorded from the GHS Panel survey that made the bureau choose to use CAPI devices to a greater degree in its data gathering activities. He said that the gradual and continuous use of electronic data capture technologies in efficient and effective ways would increase the level of accuracy, reliability and timeliness of the data produced.

The World Bank Country Director in Nigeria, Marie-Francoise Marie-Nelly, assured of the bank’s continued support for the NBS in developing high quality data for the country.

She said this would enhance national efforts towards effective planning and implementation of public programmes based on evidenced statistical information.

Ms. Marie-Nelly said that the GHS-Panel report could not have come at a better time than now that the Federal Government was focusing on the transformation of the agriculture sector.

She said for government policies and programmes to succeed, they must be based on accurate and reliable data.

Meanwhile, the World Bank and the NBS reported marginal improvements in the performances of retail and manufacturing sectors of the nation’s economy in a 2012/2013 assessment survey.

The GHS report on the two sectors showed improvements in the retail and sales sectors, from 22 to 24 per cent, and manufacturing from 6.5 to 7.7 per cent from the 2012/13 round of the survey.

The survey panel launched in Abuja was a nationally representative survey that contained detailed information on household socio-economic and income generating activities.

The survey also revealed the resilience of Nigerians in developing or coping mechanism in times of economic shocks.

Ms. Marie-Nelly at the launch said the NBS would enjoy the support of the World Bank, and commended the Federal Government for recognizing the importance of statistics in development and improving statistical data in the country.

“Statistics is an essential tool for the success of the Transformation Agenda,” she said.

The NBS administers the GHS-Panel survey every two years, working with the World Bank Living Standards Measurement Team, on a sub-sample of the 5,000 GHS households first surveyed in 2010.

The GHS-Panel data is collected in two visits designed to coincide with major periods of the main agriculture season – post-planning and post-harvest.

Using the GHS-Panel data, the World Bank hopes to undertake a multi-year analytical work programme on labour markets, social protection and welfare dynamics that will lead to the dissemination of a series of policy notes in 2014 and 2015.

The work programme has been developed in consultation with various World Bank’s sectors as well as country counterparts and development partners.

The World Bank said an innovative feature of the new data is the number of key topics, namely labour market dynamics, inequality, and middle class formation, analyzed from different angles.

These include the link between job creation and poverty reduction, and the link between household income diversification and the emergence of an embryonic Nigerian middle class, amongst others.

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