NSA, Nampol in arms with Labour Force Survey law-breakers

The Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA), the Namibian (Nampol) and City Police, wage war against unaware citizens who deny entry into their premises to NSA agents who have been conducting the Labour Force Survey since the end of September.

This has hindered progress in most parts of the country, considering the survey is supposed to conclude this Sunday with coverage of 1 900 000 households, which are expected to be part of the national data. Nonetheless, the NSA field officials are currently working on the final stages of the survey, albeit with difficulty.

“The public needs to co-operate, because these officials are conducting a survey that is for the sake of national development. It is against the law to refuse them access into to private premises or audience to hold interviews. As it is, field workers are denied entry, especially into farms,” NSA deputy director of strategic communication, Iipumbu Sakaria,has just said, adding the field workers can be identified by the name tags they wear, as well as the paperwork they present. Also, they are accompanied by police, especially in the areas with the most resistance.

According to the Statistics Act, No. 9 of 2011, citizens would be committing a crime by refusing entry into their homes to officials who conduct statistical surveys.

City Police, however, says the blame is not with the citizens, as they are unaware of the crime they are committing but is on high alert for criminals who have misrepresented themselves as survey officials in the past.

In Windhoek alone, about 20 people have refused NSA officials entry into their homes and police officers are now forced to intervene. Therefore, the City Police encourages the public to contact the police as soon as they detect anything suspicious about survey agents or those who present themselves as 'officials'.

So far, the NSA has just said, it has had problems collecting the required data, especially from rural farm owners who are difficult and won't even grant the survey agents audience for interviews.