In preparation towards the 2020 Population and Housing Census, the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) will this morning begin a trial version in three selected districts in three regions across the country.
They are the Dormaa West in the Bono Region, Bunkprugu in the North East Region and Accra Metropolis, specifically Ashiedu Keteke, Ledzokuku, Korley Klottey, Ayawaso West and Okaikoi South, in the Greater Accra Region.
Yesterday midnight was declared by the service as trial census night to serve as reference point for information collection and enumeration of residents in the designated areas.
Mr Francis Nyarko-Larbi, Head of Census Publicity, Education and Advocacy Committee told the Ghanaian Times on Saturday, that all was set for the three-month exercise.
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.
It is an essential national exercise that takes count of every person residing in Ghana at the time of the census, and establishes other important demographic details about every individual in the country.
The 2020 Census scheduled for March would be the sixth in the country following six others conducted in 10 year spaces in 1960, 1970, 1984, 2000 and 2010.
In 1960, the population was 6.7million; it increased to 8.5million in 1970, soared to 12.3 million in 1984 and inched up to 18.9 million and 24.6million in 2000 and 2010 respectively. Currently it is estimated to be 30 milion.
According to Mr Nyarko-Larbi, the trial census was in line with the United Nations’ recommendations guiding the conduct of Population and Housing Censuses worldwide.
The aim, he said it was to provide a base for accurate reports and data collection and help detect challenges they could be encountered in the multistage census so as to correct them.
This year’s trial census, he said was paramount than ever because the GSS would, for the first time, use of electronic data collection with other geo-spatial technologies, which has been recommended by the UN for the 2020 census.
Mr Nyarko-Larbi said 250 census officials from GSS from May 26, visited the communities designated for the trial census to identify and number houses and other structures to ensure complete coverage of all households.
He estimated that the 2020 census would cost in the region of GH¢500 million.
So far, he said residents in the selected areas had been cooperative, making the exercise proceed smoothly.
He, therefore, entreated all persons residing within the selected communities to cooperate with the census officials in order to ensure a successful trial census.
BY JONATHAN DONKOR