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Wednesday, 13 September 2017 12:54

All set for NSO Population Census pilot exercise

Written by  Gladys Kamakanda

Manda: Districts had been strategically selected to test several logistical activities because it is a replica of the actual census

Lilongwe, September 13, 2017: As one way of preparing for the 2018 National Malawi Population and Housing Census (MPHC), National Statistics Office (NSO) will from September 25 to October 15, this year carry out a pilot exercise in 10 districts.

NSO Public Relations Officer, Kingsley Manda told Malawi News Agency (Mana) on Tuesday, that the pilot phase is covering what they call census districts because some of them might not be the full districts.

Manda said the pilot exercise aims at testing operational and training procedures, individual workload and appropriate approach to enumeration and technical appropriateness of census instruments manual, code lists and Computer Assisted Personal Interview (CAPI) among others.

He said the 10 districts include Chitipa, Nkhata Bay and Mzimba in the northern region, Lilongwe City, Salima and Dowa in the central region while the southern region has Blantyre City, Mangochi, Mulanje and Nsanje.

Manda said the districts had been strategically selected test several logistical activities because it is a replica of the actual census.

“There are several logistics and even the technology which we are going to use, we want to take each and everything, for example we are going to use mobile network, so if we are using a mobile network we need to know that if we go to Misuku in Chitipa are we going to be able to send data using cellular network to our servers in Zomba or Lilongwe.

“So we want to test because people will be sending the information while still there in the field and we want to test the network coverage. We have been given an indication of how much the country is covered but now to be sure, some of the areas have been selected on purpose and are also stressed in our maps; we have just finished demarcating the country into numeration areas,” explained Manda.

Manda said a pilot census is supposed to be conducted one year before the actual census and the actual one will be conducted in September 2018.

He explained that unlike the previous censuses, the 2018 MPHC will use computer technology where enumerators will use tablets during data collection and send the data to the central office.

He said the pilot exercise will cost them MK150 million funded by the Government of Malawi and the United Nations Population Funds (UNFPA).


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