The chairman of the National Population Commission (NPC) Mr. Eze Iheoma (SAN), on Monday, told President Muhammadu Buhari that the sum of N271billion will be required for the proposed 2016 Census, with N10bn needed urgently to ensure the fidelity of the process.
Mr. Iheoma who led other commissioners of the NPC to Aso Villa briefed the President on what the commission would require to conduct a national census next year, 10 years after the last exercise in 2006, as stipulated by the United Nations.
He said, “A national population census, would cost about N273 billion, while about N10 billion of the amount would be needed immediately.”
Mr. Iheoma told the president that a biometric-based census was being proposed because it will eliminate multiple respondents, and ghost respondents, while making the outcome easy to audit.
According to the statement released by the special adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, he noted that as part of measures to ensure a cost-effective governance, President Buhari directed government agencies to harmonise the collection and usage of biometric data in the country, instead of replicating their efforts in this regard.
“All the agencies should work collaboratively, instead of going in different directions, stressing that adequate data was necessary for planning and development in any country”. The presidential spokesman was quoted as saying.
On the harmonisation of the collection and usage of biometric data in the country, Buhari noted that it would be cost effective and also help in giving credibility to the electoral process.
“It will be more cost effective if you work together. It helps even the credibility of the election process, as Nigerians of voting age can be identified easily” Buhari said.