Lehohla emphasises the importance of numbers

As Census 2011 advocacy and publicity programme is steadily gaining momentum, one thing is clear – Census 2011 is here and everyone counts! Census 2011, widely described as a ‘national effort that the country should be proud of’, has already been launched in North West, East London, Northern Cape, Limpopo and Free State.

“Without numbers that are tested through quality and proper methods, you cannot run a country. For too long, Africans have misled Africa because they do not have the numbers or the intellectual capacity. Africa must get the basics right,” the Statistician-General of South Africa, Pali Lehohla, said at the provincial launch of Census 2011 held in Bloemfontein in the Free State this week.
Lehohla emphasised that the future of statistics in this country depended on robust national statistics system, provincial presence and competent staff. Without a proper census, Lehohla added, South Africa, regardless of her glory, would not go anywhere.

Free State Treasury MEC, Joel Mohai, addressed delegates and said he was pleased that Stats SA had allowed the province to co-host the launch of Census 2011.

“This launch is important to all South Africans and people of foreign nationalities living in the province, regardless of their status. We need to work and assist our communities in the province to ensure that everyone is counted. Our vision in the province is to take the Census 2011 campaign to all the people,” said Mohai.

Mohai further appealed to all communities in the province to stand up and be counted in October next year, and said the data would be critical in strengthening the condition of the people in the province.

Stats SA’s Deputy Director-General of Population and Social Statistics, Kefiloe Masiteng, described Census 2011 as a momentous endeavor and said the project was in the hands of the people in the province.

“A census should be able to fit into planning, implementation and evaluation.  People in the province must take ownership of Census 2011 to make it a success. For the census to fail in the province, it would mean that the people in the Free State wanted it to fail. If it is a success, it would mean that people in the Free State wanted it to be a success,” Masiteng said.