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New Zimbabwe

THE budget needed to undertake 2022 Population and Housing Census was reviewed upwards by a US$13 million under the pretext of catering for Covid-19 precautionary measures during the enumeration process, NewZimbabwe.com can report.

Zimbabwe conducts its census after every decade.

A census is critical as it allows government and other stakeholders to plan, monitor and evaluate their programmes.

The last census in the Southern African nation was held in 2012 whilst the recent one is scheduled for next year from April 21 to 30.

Speaking at a provincial publicity meeting in Mutare, Zimstat’s director general Taguma Mahonde said Covid-19  has forced them to review 2022 Census budget.

“The era of Covid-19 is taking a toll, so as Zimstat we have had to revise our budget of census. Initially we had budgeted for US$85 million but we have since revised it to US$98 million, which implies there was an additional US$13 million. This was meant to make sure that we have the masks, sanitisers and everything else needed to limit the spread of Covid-19,” Mahonde said.

He said all enumerators will have to be fully vaccinated to be able to undertake the process.

He added that Zimstat will conduct a trial next month since they will be embarking on a digital enumeration process.

“In preparation for the census we will run a pilot census from the 18th to the 27th of November. We want to prepare and test our instruments, logistics and the new system,” he said.

“We will evaluate whether our respondents are understanding our questionnaire as we would like them to do. The trial run will ensure that the actual census is a success, and we are geared to undertake this next month,” said Mahonde.

“We would usually have the census’s preliminary results two years after the census when everyone else had forgotten about it. Our enumerators will now be armed with tablets  and when conducting data collection they will be expected to feed data into the national server by day end.”

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