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The Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) says the delayed 2021 Population and Housing census started on Sunday and ends on 30 October 2021.

Namibia carries out the population and housing census every 10 years and includes various stages.

In a statement last week, statistician-general Alex Shimuafeni said the NSA was busy planning the census phase for the past few years.

Shimuafeni said the phase includes mapping and verifying all physical built-up infrastructure countrywide.

This, he added, allows NSA to create and update various databases such as a housing register, information about locations of schools, clinics and households, and indeed having a complete framework to work with when the census commences.

“During the census planning phase, NSA managed to complete the census mapping exercise and visited every structure in the country to verify if these structures are used for habitat purposes or business activities,” he explained.

According to Shimuafeni, during the census planning phase, the NSA also acquired a government-wide license for satellite images to allow critical ministries and government agencies to access them for their development planning.

“The Pilot Census, which serves as a test or dry run for the actual population and housing census scheduled for next year, will be conducted for two weeks this October throughout the entire country and all regions with complete coverage in selected enumeration areas.

He said the NSA Census enumerators visit people’s homes throughout the country whilst adhering to all Covid – 19 protocols, and identifiable, and conduct a census survey with the household members.

All enumerators, he said, have taken an oath of secrecy binding them by law to adhere to the confidentiality aspect of NSA statistics collection.

Once the Pilot Survey is completed, other enumerators shall be sent out into the field to conduct the Post Enumeration Survey (PES), he further said.

“The PES is nothing else but a quality assurance mechanism to ensure that the quality of the data collected is at the highest level possible. It is one of the requirements for NSA data to be of the highest quality possible,” he said.

Shimuafeni added that the enumerators would be in the field from 8 November till 17 December 2021.

The population and housing census will be spatially enabled, meaning that statistics will improve as they provide updated links to location and statistics to improve the data available for socio-economic development.

Julia Heita

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