The Deji of Akure Kingdom, Oba Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi, has urged the National Population Commission to conduct a credible and internationally acceptable exercise.
The monarch recalled that the previous exercise had suffered credibility tests thereby making the data inaccurate and unreliable for national planning.
The chairman of the Ondo State Council of Obas made the call on Saturday while receiving the Local Government Coordinators of the NPC in Ondo State who had come to brief him of their preparedness ahead of the exercise scheduled for May, 2023.
The PUNCH reported that, in a statement issued by the Chief Press Secretary to the monarch, Adeyeye Michael, the monarch said, “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.
“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, so you must therefore be prepared to go into these newly opened up areas.”
Oba Aladelusi, who is also a member of the Ondo State Census Sensitization and Publicity Committee promised to mobilize traditional rulers in the state in support of the Commission so as to ensure a hitch free exercise.
He also appealed to residents of Ondo State and Akure in particular to remain in their place of residence during the exercise as there is no basis for travelling during the exercise.
The Akure South Coordinator of the NPC, Onoda Jubril, in his response, thanked the monarch for his support for the commission and for setting up a committee to collaborate with the commission in the discharge of its duties.
He also assured that the commission was fully prepared to carry out the exercise with diligence. He expressed optimism that the forthcoming census will be digital based which would reduce all sharp practices that were identified in the past.