Covid-19 Militates Against Census Preparations

The Covid-19 pandemic, which has brought the world to a standstill, continues to militate against Zimbabwe’s preparations for the census due next year, Information Minister, Monica Mutsvangwa has said.

The country remains under level 4 Covid-19-induced lockdown with gatherings save for funerals banned while business hours have since been cut short as part of a cocktail of measures by the government to curb the spread of the pandemic.

The 2022 Population and Housing Census enumeration is scheduled to run from 21 to 30 April 2022.

“Government wishes to inform the nation that 60 per cent of the country has been mapped although the COVID-19 outbreak is militating against progress,” said Mutsvangwa during a post-cabinet briefing Tuesday.

“The Bulawayo Metropolitan Province was completed, as well as 20 districts spread across the country’s provinces. The nation is informed that the preparations for the 2022 Population and Housing Census are being coordinated by the National Census Committee, which will be assisted by the Provincial and District Census Committees. The Provincial and District Census Committees will be constituted by 30 September 2021.”

Mutsvangwa explained that the Cabinet adopted the 2022 Population and Housing Census Timelines, which are disaggregated into Pre-Enumeration, Enumeration and Post Enumeration Phases.

“The Pre-Enumeration phase which started on 21 Nov 2019 will run until 17 April 2022, and has two major activities, namely: the Census Field Mapping Exercise (to be completed by 21 January 2022) and the Pilot Census (to be completed by 27 November 2021),” she said.

“The Enumeration Phase is scheduled for 21 to 30 April 2022. The post enumeration will be completed by 31 August 2022.”

She said activities during the post enumeration phase include the publication of the preliminary census results by 1 August, 2022; data analysis, processing and dissemination; post enumeration survey; evaluation of the census in terms of content and coverage errors; and recovery of census equipment and materials.

Zimbabwe holds a census every 10 years and the next year exercise is crucial as it precedes the 2023 harmonised elections.

Source: Centre for Innovation and Technology

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