The Deji of Akure, Oba Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi, has urged the National Population Commission to conduct a credible and internationally acceptable population and housing census.
Aladetoyinbo made the call while receiving local government coordinators of the NPC in Ondo State who came to brief him of their preparedness ahead of the exercise scheduled for May nationwide.
Oba Aladelusi, who is Chairman of the Ondo State Council of Obas, doubted the credibility of the previous exercise, saying that there must be accurate and credible data for national planning.
“We now have a very good opportunity to right the wrong of the past and ensure that all the data that will be collected will be realistic, reliable and fit for national planning and development.
“We can no longer go back to the dark days of falsifying figures and depriving ourselves the true reflection of things,” he said.
The traditional ruler asked the local government coordinators to ensure that everyone was counted and avoid the errors of assumption which characterised previous exercise.
“You must ensure that your enumerators get into the nooks and crannies of the state.
“In Akure for instance, there is a wide population explosion, you must therefore be prepared to go into these newly opened up areas,” he said.
Oba Aladelusi, who is a member of the Ondo State Census Sensitisation and Publicity Committee, promised to mobilise all traditional rulers in the state to support the commission, to ensure a hitch free exercise.
He appealed to residents of the state and Akure in particular, to remain in their place of residence during the exercise as there was no basis for travelling during the exercise.
In his response, the Akure South Coordinator of the Commission, Onoda Jubril, thanked the traditional ruler for his support for the commission and for setting up a committee to collaborate with the commission in the discharge of its duties.
Jubril assured Oba Aladelusi that the commission was fully prepared to carry out the exercise with diligence.
He explained that the forth-coming census would be digital-based and would therefore reduce all sharp practices that were identified in the past.