N$ 50 000 fine for those denying NSA entry for census purposes

Stefanus Nashama

The Namibia Statistic Agency (NSA) says anyone denying its officials entry into their premises for purposes of the planned national census will be slapped with a N$ 50 000 fine or alternatively face a five-year imprisonment sentence.

This is according to NSA Deputy Statistician General Otilie Mwazi, who said that the data of the census is important to guide national planning and development.

The NSA also says it will ensure that confidentiality and intelligence of the data information to be obtained in the planned 2023 population and housing census will be protected, to avoid state capture by other countries.

Speaking at a census engagement meeting with the diplomatic corps and international partners in Windhoek yesterday, Alex Shimuafeni, the Statistician-General and Chief Executive Officer at NSA on said although the agency is going to use digital platforms with computers and tablets during the 2023 population and housing census, the information to be collected is still confidential and cannot be revealed to third parties.

“We will adhere to the Acts of the NSA to ensure that we do not contradict with the rules of the Act in terms of confidentiality and intelligence of the data,” he reiterated.

He also emphasized that the NSA will not reveal the specific details of people who may be found illegally in Namibia since it is against the Agency Act.

“We will release the data impartially,”he added.

He indicated that the NSA will only count people in the country and not outside the country.

Shimuafeni stressed that a census is the cornerstone of statistical work and holds immense significance in capturing the pulse of societies, therefore the process requires every Namibian’s participation.

“We do not collect data for ourselves, we collect data on national development which is important to national planning,” he explained.

He also mentioned that the NSA is still accepting financial support from those who are willing to do so, due to the resources gap, adding that resources can never be enough.

According to him, NSA has already done engagement with constituency councilors to diverge all the relevant information to the people, especially those in remote areas to enable the process to go smoothly.

Meanwhile, Mwazi, during her presentation also said the 2023 population and housing census is the first in the history of Namibia to be conducted in a modern way, by using a digital system ‘computer assistant personnel’ and tablets to conduct the census. This is in comparison with the manual system that has been used before, she said.

She indicated that the NSA has received 30 000 tablets from the United Nations Programme to be used in the current census.

“After the census process, we will ensure that all the data is cleared off the tablets before giving them back. This will be done to ensure data confidentiality and intelligence,” she said.

sized that voting cards as one of the most relevant requirements for those applying for NSA posts make it easier for people to work in their respective constituencies because they can understand the language and are familiar with the area.

She stated that NSA will not include Non-Namibians as part of the country’s population in the census data, however, it will only tell the number of people who are not Namibians.

She also indicated that NSA will apply ‘the reference of night’ which means people will be counted where they spend the night.

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