Uganda Bureau of Statistics is lobbying for an additional 33.2 billion shillings for the preparations of the postponed national and population census.
Uganda Bureau of Statistics is lobbying for an additional UGX 33.2bn for the preparations of the postponed national and population census.
However the bureau is already facing a challenge in the 2012/2013 budget allocation because the Ministry of Finance has already put a budget ceiling beyond which government departments cannot access more funding. The ceiling has been set at UGX 9.3bn, a cause for concern that there may be a further delay if the anomaly is not addressed.
John Male-Mukasa, the executive director Uganda Bureau of Statistics, says that parliament in the last financial year approved UGX 19bn for the census but government only released UGX 13.3bn creating a UGX 5.7bn shortfall of the approved budget.
Initially the national housing census exercise was meant to take place in August 2012. But the process was dogged by lack of funds that forced government to postpone it to 2013.
According to Francis Mashate, the Deputy Executive Director who doubles as the National Census Coordinator, the bureau had initialled preparatory activities in January 2009. He says there is progress in the census preparation although a lot needs to be accomplished before 2013.
Mashate observed that the bureau has designed the census instruments, pretested and translated into 20 local languages. He says the census mapping has been undertaken and disseminated back to the districts. A census publicity and advocacy campaign was launched in all the four regions of the country.
The entire census exercise is estimated at UGX 87.4bn. Had the Census been conducted as scheduled the activities would cost UGX 76bn. The increase in cost is attributed to the number of administrative areas, changes in transport costs owing to the rising fuel costs as well as prolonged usage of the hired data processing centre.
Now, Male-Mukasa is appealing to parliament to work closely with the Ministry of Finance in order to provide resources geared toward the completion of the Census and avert another possible postponement.
Census involves taking data on the number of people classified into the gender, number of children and economic activity. The data helps government to plan, monitor and evaluate its programmes in improving people’s livelihood.
The census exercise has overtime been faced by challenges of postponement. In 1990, the exercise was put off to 1991, and in 2001, it was pushed to 2002.
uganda census 2013