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Lai Mohammed charges media houses to champion advocacy for 2023 census

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The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, on Wednesday, called on media houses, especially Federal Government media to champion the advocacy for successful 2023 census.

He made the call at the opening of a three-day National Capacity Building Workshop on 2023 Population and Housing Census for state directors and management staff of National Orientation Agency (NOA) by National Population Commission (NPC) in Abuja.

Represented by Dr Garba Abari, the Director-General, National Orientation Agency (NOA), the minister, who described census as “very important milestone in National Development”, urged Radio Nigeria, Voice of Nigeria, Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) and others to rise to the occasion.

He commended the National Population Commission (NPC) for the commitment toward conducting an accurate and reliable digital census come 2023.

The Chairman of NPC, Alhaji Nasir Kwarra, said that the workshop was a demonstration of the commission’s commitment to the census.

He added that “the conduct of this important workshop underscores the determination of the commission to effectively mobilise Nigerians,
not only for the 2023 Census but also other activities of the commission.”

Kwarra explained that the commission would leverage on the nationwide grassroots outreach of the NOA to communicate with Nigerians.

He reiterated NPC’s need to collaborate with NOA in areas where the agency has comparative advantage over the commission, listing such areas as community engagements, field sensitisation campaign, engagements with traditional institutions, Community Based Organisations (CBOs), Civil Society Organisations, among others.

Prof. Uba Nnabue, the Deputy Chairman, Publicity and Advocacy Committee, called for increased publicity and advocacy aimed at sensitising
Nigerians on the importance of census.

Nnabue expressed the willingness of the commission to collaborate with relevant agencies and the media for a successful census.

It was reported that following the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari for the next Population and Housing Census to be conducted in 2023, the NPC has intensified preparations to give the nation the first digital census and guide for development planning.

The commission has completed the Enumeration Area Demarcation (EAD) in local government areas of the country, as well as the first and second Census Pretest in selected Enumeration Areas in the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory in preparation for the census.

The methodology for the next census has been designed to produce not only accurate, reliable and acceptable census but also inclusive and user-friendly census data.

The National Capacity Building Workshop is therefore aimed at educating the management and state directors of NOA on the methodology and processes for the 2023 census.

The workshop is also to leverage on the nationwide and grassroots reach and structures of NOA in the publicity campaign of the 2023 census.

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