September 15 declared Census Day 2012
Minister of Finance Dr. Ashni Singh has signed the mandatory Census Order and Regulations declaring September 15 as Guyana’s 2012 Census Day.
Guyana’s impending Census is part of the global round of Population and Housing Censuses for the current 2010 Round whereby almost all countries which are members of the United Nations have conducted and completed their national Censuses during the period which commenced in 2005 and conclude in 2014, the demarcated period for the 2010 Round of Censuses.
In fact during the Meeting of 43rd Session of the United Nations Statistical Commission, the highest global body for policy making in Statistics, held at the UN Headquarters in February of this year, a resolution was passed on behalf of the Secretary-General urging all Governments which had not yet executed their National Population and Housing Censuses under the current 2010 Round, to make every effort to so do before the end of the 2010 Round in 2014.
Because of the massive, demanding and costly nature of the Census exercise, this activity in most countries is held just once every ten (10) years. Guyana has traditionally organized its Census exercises with the rest of the other CariCom group of countries, under the coordination of the Statistics Division of the CariCom Secretariat.
For this round, except for Haiti which has been unable to mount a Census because of its devastation by natural disasters in recent years, all other countries, except for Guyana and Suriname, conducted and completed their National Censuses in the years 2010 or 2011.
Already, eight days of intensive training have been completed for approximately 100 Regional Census Coordinators and Assistants, Area Coordinators recruited from and assigned to all ten (10) regions of Guyana and other Bureau staff who will be in the front line of training and management of the enumeration activities in every area and Region of Guyana.
In fact these core persons just trained will now disperse to all 10 Regions to train the 3,000 plus enumerators from all walks of life who have applied and have been selected for training as enumerators and supervisors.
For Guyana, the issuance of the Ministerial Order and Regulations declaring Census day in one month’s time, signals that all of the myriad preparations for this Census which began more than three years ago, are in their final stages of completion and those Guyanese who have opted to be a part of this mammoth national exercise, managed by the Bureau, will be ready to commence their work in four week’s time.
The Census is the only national exercise where every building is counted and every household within every building or any economic activity within each building are enumerated and/or recorded, at the same period in time. The Census is and has always been much more than a headcount, it is a check and evaluation of the changing size, composition, quality of life, economic activities, maternal health, fertility rates, housing stock, qualification and education levels, foreign-born population, access to basic social services, just to name a few. The plethora of information that will be collected will assist the policy makers in determining whether Guyana is on track to achieve several of the MDGs.
Census 2002 put Guyana’s population at 751 thousand. All wait to see what it is ten years later.
Upon signing the Census Order and Regulations, Minister Singh stated that “Census 2012 represents our latest efforts to update the vast array of data we compile on national life to inform policy-making by Government and decision-making by other stakeholders such as the business community. I have no doubt that the 2012 census will prove equally valuable in this regard, and I wish the Bureau of Statistics every success in executing this important national activity.”