World Population Day ; Between Countable and Uncountable Nigerians, By ABUBAKAR YUSUF.

The commemoration of the World Population Day every 4th of July had turned to mere rituals, after futile efforts to re-count the populace after close to two decades down the line by successive government in Nigeria.


This year’s celebration was coming at the peak period when the last administration of President Muhammadu Buhari had set a date for the head count having committed a quantum amount of tax payers money yet a mirage.


It was obvious that the agency charged with the exercise, the National Population Commission had mobilized both human and material resources under the leadership of Hon Nasir Isa Kwarra who embarked on massive mobilisation both in the conventional and non conventional medium to ensure the success of the impending exercise before the postponement.


The sudden postponement of the 2023 census exercise at the twilight of the last administration when arrangements was already concluded was an international embarrassment, with foreign bodies making adequate arrangements to support the housing and population census exercise.


Twice , the exercise was postponed and now indefinitely, this does not augur well for the development in all areas of national development and the image of the country and its leadership.


With the willingness of the leadership of the agency under Nasir Isa Kwarra along with the international Communities, it behoves on the current administration to without further delay execute the headcount, so as to resolve many anomaly in the country.


No nation thrive socially and economically without an accurate figure of it’s population at this digital age, and in line with the UN SDGs, therefore, to forestall seamless provisions of social, economic and infrastructural development, the diversity of Nigeria’s population ought to be ascertained forthwith through headcount.


With uncountable Nigerians , the message to the developed and developing world like Nigeria will remain bleak future for it’s citizenry in all ramifications.


Having achieved over 90% of it’s preparation for the exercise in 2023 , the best option for the new administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is to go ahead with the exercise, that is capable of justifying the template of decade of action of SDGs domesticated in Nigeria.


With the reverse and postponements, if not reversed to ensure it is carried out before the end of 2023 , may erode the confidence the international communities, partners and donor agencies have bestowed on the government and the commission, of the desire to have an acceptable and first digital housing and population census in Nigeria.


Nigeria cannot afford to have waisted bilions voted in preparation for the exercise billed for 2022 and postponed to 2023 before the final postponement, for Nigeria to spend same amount for the transition of government every four years, it will be an abberation to avoid census expected to hold every ten years , but blatantly abandoned since 2006.


It is high time a resolute decisions is arrived at by the current administration on the new date, as the giant of Africa nicknamed Nigeria will be a mere a nomenclature before the international communities .


A country with no accurate figure is doomed in all areas and could be denied some international privileges knowingly or unknowingly, it is high time critical decisions that affected the well being of the citizenry like population census be taken serious by the government of the day.





Yusuf writes from Abuja and can be reached on [email protected].

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