The Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) has revealed that more than 100,000 jobs are up for grabs as the country prepares for the 2024 National Population and Housing Census.
Dr. Chris Ndatira Mukiza, the Executive Director of UBOS and Government chief statistician, announced the news at the launch of the Africa Statistics Week on Monday, November 13, 2023, at Statistics House in Kampala.
Dr. Mukiza noted that the National Population Census night, which is expected to take place on May 9 and 10, 2024, is still on track with 87% of the mapping of areas (villages) so far completed. The last Census mapping was undertaken by UBOS in 2012/13 in preparation for the 2014 National Population and Housing Census.
“We have already mapped 87% of the country where the National Population and Housing Census is going to take place. So, we are on course for this very important undertaking which guides the country in policy formulation and planning,” Dr. Mukiza noted.
The ED explained that the mapping exercise is one of the key preparatory activities undertaken prior to the actual counting of people and is carried out to update boundaries, facilities such as schools and health centers, and households.
Additionally, he said in areas that are densely populated and making mapping difficult, Dr. Mukiza told journalists that the Bureau is liaising with the Ministry of Finance to procure tablets that will be used by the enumerators.
“The procurement [of the tablets] is progressing, we are already at the contract signing level. We have already identified the suppliers, procuring from international manufacturers directly, which saves costs and they customize whatever we want,” he noted.
Asked when the training of enumerators will be conducted, Dr. Mukiza told The Ankole Times that as soon as tablets arrive in the country (probably February or March), they will be configured to align with the needs of the census, after which the training will be affected. This he said, will be conducted in levels, starting with the national trainers (10 days), regional trainers (10 days), and the district trainers (10 days).
“The training is expected to take one month, and this will be the whole of April (1st to 30th),” he noted.
The Africa Statistics Week, which was marked by a series of events that came ahead of the African Statistics Day, is an annual event that is celebrated on November 18 to raise public awareness of the importance of statistics in all aspects of social and economic life.
Dr. Mukiza while officiating the launch of the statistics week said that innovation is a necessity to ensure timely data availability, accuracy, and quality in informing planning, policy formulation, and evidence-based decision-making.
“..the threefold impact of these ingredients, supported by reliable statistics” are “pivotal for socio-economic transformation, fostering progress in the right direction and benefitting citizens through government programs,” he noted, adding that statistics are a mirror that allows “us to glimpse into the future and reflect on the past.”
Dr. Mukiza highlighted that during the week, they will hold interactions with various stakeholders on how to disseminate statistics. This training according to him will extend to university students, media practitioners, and civil society organizations.
This year’s Africa Statistics Week is being held under the theme, “Modernising data ecosystems to accelerate the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA): The role of official statistics and big data in the economic transformation and sustainable development of Africa.”
To build anticipation for this groundbreaking census, Dr. Mukiza revealed that the official launch of the census is scheduled for November 30, and will be presided over by the president. The countdown contributes to the sense of expectation surrounding the extensive data collection effort.
Currently estimated at 45.5 million, with a growth rate of 30.4 per cent million, UBOS is committed to providing accurate and updated demographic information.
Uganda’s last population and housing census was in 2014, and the 2024 census serves as an essential step in ensuring that Uganda’s demographic data remains current, reflecting the nation’s evolving landscape.
Additional Reporting by: Daily Express