OrderPaperToday – The House of Representatives on Wednesday resolved to prevail on the federal government to make a pronouncement on the commencement date of the next census in the fourth quarter of 2019.
The House also resolved to urge the federal government to make provisions for census funds in 2019 budget and also appeal to the international community to support same.
The House further urged the government to mobilize the National Population Commission (NPC) for the completion of enumeration area demarcation and preliminary preparation of the census.
Moving the motion under matters of urgent public importance, Mr. Ossy Prestige (PDP, Abia) noted that the United Nation (UN) Fund for Population Activities has noted that Nigeria has a dynamic economy and a huge population expected to double in the next two days.
According to him, twelve (12) years since the last census was held with Nigeria’s population given as one hundred and forty million the current population of Nigeria remains unknown.
Contributing to the debate, Mr. Linus Okorie (PDP, Ebonyi) said that Nigeria can’t keep guessing on its population.
“How can we keep guessing how many we are in Nigeria? It is very important that if this country is going to move forward in a addition to other things, we must get to the basics”, he said.
For Mr. Pally Iriase (APC, Edo), “this is a motion we should not treat with levity because Nigeria for a long time has been living a lie. We tell lies in everything. We talk about per capital income. Even our economists are not ashamed when they churn out figures.
“A nation that bases it planning on faulty figures cannot move forward. This is an embarrassing situation where you have a population figure lasting for 10 years and there is no plan in place to do another one. How do we understand how many persons that have migrated from other places.”
On his part, Hon. Danburum, (APC, Kano) however expressed reservation on the timing of the census, saying it is coinciding with elections.
The motion was passed when Speaker Yakubu Dogara put the question and referred to the committee on Legislative Compliance for further legislative action.