The third stage of a countrywide population and housing census will begin next month to gather information on the number of residents in a household, tenure, access to drinking water, electricity, cooking fuel, toilet facilities, communication and internet facilities, methods of solid waste disposal and other household information, the Department of Census and Statistics said.
The first two stages of the census where all Grama Niladhari divisions were mapped and all building units in the country were listed had already been completed. The crucial third stage of the census will be held from February 27 to March 19 and will be followed up by a census revision round on March 20 and 21 where houses will be revisited. In addition, a separate census on those who do not have permanent residence and live outdoors will be conducted in the night of March 19, Department’s Director General Suranjana Vidyaratne said.
“We request households to extend their support to the census and permit officers deployed by the department to carry out their duties to inspect their homes when they arrive at each residence. The officers can be identified by an identification card issued to them by the Department of Census and Statistics,” Mr. Vidyaratne said.
Data on each household resident including the full name, gender, marital status, ethnic group, NIC number, date of birth, religion, citizenship, migration to a new district, physical and mental ailments, information on individuals who have left the country for more than six months and other data will also be collected during the census. The upcoming census will be the first in 30 years to cover the population and housing in the entire country.
The census funded by the government at a cost of Rs.170 million will include 80,000 field officers visiting households recruited by Divisional Secretaries in each district and 16,000 Grama Niladharis and other public officers who will supervise the field officers. Training for census supervisors will begin on January 12 and training for field officers will start on January 19. (Olindhi Jayasundere)