The 2023 Population and Housing Census, which was initially set for May 3–7, 2023, has been postponed, with a new date to be selected by the incoming administration, with President Muhammadu Buhari’s approval.
On Friday, April 28, 2023, in the Presidential Villa in Abuja, the President met with a few members of the Federal Executive Council as well as Nasir Isa-Kwarra, Chairman of the National Population Commission, and his staff. After the discussion, the President gave the go-ahead.
A press release containing this was issued early on Saturday and was signed by Lai Mohammed, the minister of information and culture.
“In arriving at the decision to postpone the census,” the statement says, “the meeting reiterated the critical need for the conduct of a Population and Housing Census, 17 years after the last census, to collect up-to-date data that will drive the developmental goals of the country and improve the living standard of the Nigerian people.”
Mohammed quoted Buhari as saying that appreciable progress had been made in the preparation for and implementation of the now postponed census, adding that the President commended the methodology being put in place by the NPC to conduct accurate and reliable census.
“The President noted that with the completion of the Enumeration Area Demarcation of the country, conduct of first and second pre-tests, the recruitment and training of ad hoc workers, procurement of Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) and ICT infrastructures, appreciable progress has been made in the implementation of the 2023 Population and Housing Census.
“He also commended the methodology being put in place by the Commission to conduct accurate and reliable Census, especially the massive deployment of technology that is capable of delivering world class Census and laying a sustainable basis for future censuses.”
The statement added, “The President further directed the Commission to continue with preparations for the conduct of the 2023 Population and Housing Census in order to sustain the gains already recorded and provide the basis for the incoming administration to consolidate these achievements.”
“The meeting was attended by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami; the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed; the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed; the Minister of State, Budget and National Planning, Mr Clem Agba and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha,” the statement concluded.