The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) has organized a day’s capacity building training for Journalists on the upcoming 2021 Population and Housing Census in Ghana. The training is part of a series of stakeholder engagements and activities earmarked before the census date.
The media practitioners were selected from the Northern, North East, Savannah, Upper East, Upper West and Oti regions, and given the requisite knowledge on the first ever digital census that involves the use of tablets (Computer Assisted Personal Interviewing, CAPI) in the country.
The Head of Census Methodology at the Ghana Statistical Service, Mr. Owusu Kagya in an interview after the training seized the opportunity to advise the general public to cooperate with the Enumerators and Supervisors who would be deplored nationwide to conduct the exercise.
He noted that the citizenry must take the exercise seriously and give reliable information to the field officers when they come around during the period.
He added that the availability of right information would ensure proper planning of the nation’s developmental priorities and indicated anything short of accurate data from the public will affect the nation’s development.
“So, if you give us information that cannot be reliable then it is the district, it is the region and it is Ghana that would suffer. So we should all see this as a national exercise and give the right information to the personnel so that Ghana can make use of this data that would be made available to develop to the country”
“We need to all see this as a national exercise, national exercise because we need this data and information to plan for our districts, we need this data to plan for our regions, we need this data to plan for mother Ghana and it is the information that you give us that we put out in the public domain” Mr. Kagya emphasized.
Mr. Owusu Kagya highlighted the socio-demographic characteristics of the population, employment i.e the underemployed and unemployed population are among about 13 thematic areas the questionnaire will focus on.
The participants were also entreated to carry themselves as apostles and ambassadors of the census in their line of duty.
Meanwhile, the GSS Publicity, Education and Advocacy Officer, Mr. William Addo called for partnership between the various media organization and the Ghana Statistical Service to disseminate the right information to educate and inform the public about the census.
He believes this would enable the citizenry to accept the exercise and participate fully during the data collection, adding that, “This is supposed to be a national responsibility and everybody is expected to help out in any way they can. So the media owners for instance, this is where their Corporate Social Responsibility comes to play. And even the radio stations need that data, so let’s do this together.”
Mr. William indicated that the coronavirus pandemic would not be an impediment despite the upsurge in the number of infections nationwide. He assured the relevant safety protocols will be observed to curb the spread of the virus.
“It’s because of COVID-19 that it has come this far, it was supposed to come in 2020 so it’s been shifted by one year on its normal calendar” he explained.