National Statistician Douglas Kimi when addressing participants at the launching of the first-ever report of the Solomon Islands Poverty Maps on Monday, said his office is currently rolling out key statistical activities within the framework of the national statistics development strategy (NSDS).
Mr Kimi said one of the challenges before them is the initial efforts towards the preparations for the coming 2019 Census, which he regarded as a huge statistical and logistical undertaking.
“While many people would think that the National General Elections is the biggest nationwide project in the country, I would say it is about half the size of a national census in scope and coverage
“In the elections, we enumerate those who are 18 years and older. In the census, we enumerate those starting at age zero,” he added.
He said it’s a very big task which needs much bigger budget especially looking at the logistic part of it.
“Already, our plan towards that event already visions the upcoming national general elections which means we have to spread out the activities in relation to getting in there,” Mr Kimi said.
He said with less resource available, they have started little by little since last year by firstly doing the village resource survey which more like village census.
However, he added that they actually depend on the budget available as it requires every village to get to.
He said currently the preparatory work is in progress, but they call upon all development partners and stakeholders to support NSO in funding and implementing the 2019 census.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and Treasury, Manasseh Sogavare during the event also made the same call.
“May I also take this opportunity to call upon all development partners to support the government and the NSO prepare and implement the forthcoming 2019 population census.
“As you are now aware, the census data is a key source for this analysis. It would be impossible to compare the next findings without successfully completing the 2019 Census,” he added.
The census is carried out after every ten years with the previous one being held in 2009.
By IAN KAUKUI