The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) says it is hopeful it should be able to carry out the population and housing census for this year as planned even though it is yet to receive the full allocation for the exercise.
The Service requested GHS45 million under the 2019 budget but has since been allocated GHS25 million.
So far, the Service has carried out its trial census in selected districts with issues of demarcation yet to be fully completed.
But the Head of Publicity at the Ghana Statistical Service, Francis Nyarko Larbi told Citi News the service is hopeful of conducting the exercise to help in providing information for planning.
“We requested for a little above GHS40 million in the 2018 budget and we were granted GHS25 million. When you make a request into the national budget, it is not everything that is given to you just because you have requested it. So the GHS25 million has taken us this far but going forward, we just started 2020 so I haven’t heard of any release for the census.”
“At our level, everything is going on smoothly. If probably there is any problem, it will be in the realm of management and if it is something that will affect us, in due course they will let us know,” he said.
Delay in 2020 census
The Ghana Statistical Service had earlier indicated that there was a possibility that the 2020 population and housing census scheduled to start in March could be delayed if some existing on-field challenges were not resolved.
Government Statistician, Professor Samuel Kobina Annim noted that while he is confident funds will be released for the exercise, he argued that other challenges could affect the intended start date of the exercise.
“From a technical point of view, the Ghana Statistical Service is very ready to have the census done in 2020. We’ve also received a high governmental commitment that this is an activity that should precede an election. In terms of the date that we should expect our men on the field, we still have to go through some considerations. We did say March but due to some challenges we might a delay by a month or two.”
Ghana’s population and census
Ghana’s population is now variously estimated at 30 million.
The conduct of the census is in accordance with the Statistical Service Law, 1985 (PNDCL 135), which empowers the Government Statistician to conduct statistical surveys and any census in Ghana.
The country also previously had censuses in 1960, 1970, 1984 and 2000. The country is supposed to undertake a census exercise after every 10 years.