|President Koroma launches final 2015 census results|
By State House Communication Unit
President Dr Ernest Bai Koroma on Wednesday December 21, 2016, officially launched the final results of the 2015 Population and Housing Census at State House in Freetown.
Delivering his keynote address, the president reiterated government's commitment to the process from the beginning, and thanked Statistics Sierra Leone (SSL) for releasing the results in time.
He described the census report as the most authentic data the country has ever had owing to the fact that development partners and SSL ensured the report adhered to international standards of transparency and accountability. He also observed that the process has been participatory involving all stakeholders in monitoring and evaluation of the entire process.
According to President Koroma, the credibility and acceptability of census results strengthen democracy as well as provide the information that would guide the government and development partners in making decisions and the formulation of policies and programs.
Whilst accepting the results as presented by SSL and supported by the donor community, he urged development partners, civil society organizations, Local and International Non-Governmental Organizations to start using the report in policy and program formulation. The president also called on all to stay engaged as "we await other reports and the 17 thematic reports due in July 2017". He thanked development partners for supporting the process.
In his Power Point presentation, the Statistician General of Statistics Sierra Leone, Mr Mohamed King Koroma said the 2015 Housing and Population Census is the fifth modern census conducted in Sierra Leone to deepen democracy and foster peace and stability in the country.
The total population of the country revealed by the final census report is 7,092,113 among which the male population amounted to 3,490,978 and female 3,601,135 and a sex ratio of 96.8% males per 100 females. Mr Koroma further stated that Eastern Region amounted to 1,642,370, Northern Region 2,508,201, Southern Region 1,441,308 and Western Area 1,500,234 forming 23.2%, 35.4%, 20.3% and 21.1% respectively of the entire population of Sierra Leone.
Representative of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA, Dr Kim Eva Dickson, said she was gratified as the release of the 2015 Population and Housing Census was an attainment of a significant milestone. She commended the SSL and the country for conducting a credible and transparent census and thanked the government and the people of Sierra Leone for their commitment during the entire process. She added that technical multidisciplinary activities, the structures established and the strategic partnership with development partners made it possible for achieving such a milestone.
Similarly, both the British High Commissioner, Guy Warrington, and the Irish Ambassador, Catherine Campbell, described the process as credible, transparent and adhered to international standards that would be used for the benefit of the people of Sierra Leone.
The Minister of Finance and Economic Development (MoFED), Mr Momodu Kargbo, congratulated SSL for providing the final results in record time. He said the report has prepared the platform for evidence-based policy formulation and informed decision making process. The data provided, he said, will be of immense importance to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as government needs reliable and credible information for development planning purposes. He disclosed that government provided 64% of funding to the 2015 census while development partners provided the rest.
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