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Fashola Warns Against Manipulation Of 2016 Census

Immediate past Governor of Lagos state Mr. Babatunde Fashola warns that rapid development will continue to be elusive unless Nigeria gets it right during the 2016 census.

The immediate past Governor of the state Mr. Babatunde Fashola has warned that rapid development will continue to be elusive unless Nigeria gets it right during the 2016 census.

Fashola who made the observation at the launch of three books entitled ‘The Great Leap: Speeches Of Governor Babatunde Fashola; In Bold Print : Thoughts Of Babatunde Fashola and ‘The Lagos Blow Down,’ compiled and edited by the former Special Adviser to Lagos State Governor on media Mr. Hakeem Bello and Mr. Dapo Adeniyi said entrenched practice of manipulating census figures in the country is impeding the nation’s economic growth and development.

“Given the people that we are, and from the people who did our first census now owing up that figures were falsified, the onus is on us to get it right in 2016. “I say this, because data, in my view, is important. If the work of government is to provide services to people, its efficiency will be determined by its knowledge of how many people need service.

And therefore without accurate census figures, it may seem that we are not determined to head on the path of development. “The numbers have changed from 160 million to 170 million and sometimes we now hear of 180 million. But I recall that during the last census exercise in 2006, we worked with the National Population Commission (NPC) then. When they returned a number of over nine million, it NEMA Urges Relocation Of Citizens From Flood-Prone Areas was clear that it has become, Fela’s words, ‘government magic’. “Because I recalled very clearly that for 11 nights and 11days, we did not sleep.

It was my office as the then Chief of Staff that led, including all the Local Government chairmen. And the population commission told us that they were going to enumerate households and the definition of a household is one family; of husband, wife and children. “At the end of the exercise, we enumerated 4.5 million households in Lagos.

Yet, they returned with only nine million as Lagos population. It meant that all households in Lagos have only husband and wife, and no children. “But that is a matter for us to take seriously and play our roles when the time comes. Because when census comes, some people will start going to their state of origin. Census is not about where you come from, but where you live.

This is because the aggregated figure here is the data that will be used to plan your life, that of your children and that of the next generation,”. While reviewing the book, “The Lagos Blow Down” Town Planner Moses Ogunleye noted that blow down of Bank of Industry building as the first controlled building in Africa sub-region was a litmus test for the former governor of the state.

He said the book chronicled the success recorded in the demolition of the tallest building located in highbrow Broad Street in the Lagos Island, saying he courageously exercise power reposed on him in section 28 of the Land Use Act by acquiring the building from the Federal Government to achieve planned controlled demolition on Sunday 21, 2008.



-Emmanuel Ukudolo

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