Uganda: Ubos to Go Digital During Forthcoming 2023 Census

Statistics body, UBOS has revealed that it will go digital while carrying out the forthcoming national housing and population census set for August 2023.

“We have a foolproof technology system that has an inbuilt quality control and we are sure we will get it right. This time we are going to have a technology- based census and to this, we will be using tablets,” said James Kizza, UBOS’ director for Digital Solutions and Data Capability on Monday.

“There are many advantages to collecting data electronically, such as efficiency, timeliness and improved data quality. That means that what we have had in the past where complete results come after say one to two years, we should expect that this time round the results will come in much earlier.”

He explained that to this, government is to procure at least 150,000 tablets for use during the census.

Kizza however noted that this will not be the first time UBOS is using tablets , noting that previously, during the Parish Development Model data collection, the gadgets were deployed.

“During the PDM, the approach was for everyone to use their own devices and had different levels of capability as some would run out of battery or would not run some applications. This time we will provide tablets to enumerators.”

He noted UBOS is making plans to train enumerators on how to use the tablets to carry out the census since they use different technology from the one used during the Parish Development Model data collection exercise.

UBOS’ director for Digital Solutions and Data Capability noted they have put in place a system that will ensure proper monitoring of the exercise to avoid any defects.

“By the time we go out there, we will have everything ready and we will be monitoring on a minute by minute basis. There is a pilot going to happen in which we will do all the tests so that by the time we go for the census, we are ready for everything.”

Godfrey Nabong, the head of the department of local government statistics in UBOS explained that the tablets have not been specifically bought for the census but will also be used by other government agencies.

“It will not be technology to support census but rather to support service delivery in the country. After the census, the tablets will be used by other arms of government to enhance service delivery like education, health local government and other arms Government is investing(in tablets) not only for census but across its arms and agencies,”Nabong said.

At least shs138 billion will be used to conduct the forthcoming national population and housing census in August 2023.

Statistics week

On Monday, UBOS officials announced week-long activities to commemorate the Africa Statistics Day aimed at intensifying the development of statistics on the continent.

The commemorations that will run between November 14 and 18 will climax with the African Statistics Day on 18 November under the theme “Strengthening data systems by modernizing the production and use of agricultural statistics with a view of informing policies to improve resilience in agriculture, nutrition, and food security on the African Continent”.


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