Nigeria is due for another census in 2016. I hope this time we’ll do a thorough job given improvement in technology.
Our census has always been controversial. There are speculations that folks hype the number in regions for the sake of getting bigger allocation.
From my experience, folks in rural areas take census seriously, census representatives go from house to house asking questions and filling the forms on behalf of the villagers. My parents talked about how diligent the census agents were in 2006.
A family member residing in another state were told to go to specific centres allocated to them to get counted. Many people had to put up with this as they were keen to get their community represented.
Looking at the questions from 2016 Nigeria 2006 Census Questionnaire I think lots of very useful questions were asked that should have helped in decision-making.
The last part of the questionnaire were important questions on: Income, Education background, toilet facilities, access and type of water supplies etc
If questions such as these were answered accurately, it will help to see prevalent living conditions of most Nigerians.
People want to cooperate with the government to get counted but the process need to be simple enough to encourage participants – asking people to give up a whole day so as to be counted is counter-productive as many people will not be bothered. Hopefully, the NPC will by now learn from the past, it will be fantastic for once to have less controversial census.