For immediate release 22 February 2022
- Census 2022: Statement from Chairperson of Council and Statistician-General
As the Chairperson of the Statistics Council, Prof. David Everatt, and the Statistician-General, Mr. Risenga Maluleke, we note issues raised by various stakeholders on some difficulties experienced during the commencement of Census 2022. While there are a host of technical, COVID-19 related and other factors that impacted the roll-out of the census in the midst of a pandemic and economic downturn, we take full responsibility for Census 2022 from what we can control – enumeration, systems, quality control and so on. Where these faltered, we have repaired them. When the platform could not handle the volume of responses, within 72 hours we had transferred it to the cloud. We hear you and we are doing all we can to help you.
- Because the census is not about Stats SA – it is your story. We need every resident in South Africa, and the organisations that represent them, to make this census work. Stats SA can only make available the technology and person-power to enable every resident to complete the census – in person, on the web, and by phone. Stats SA will run a post enumeration survey, and we will be completely transparent about what has gone well and what has not. We bring in international experts to watch us and intervene if needed.
- The census leadership briefed the Statistics Council on the difficulties experienced during the start of the census counting process. The census is a massive and complex undertaking and Prof. Everatt and Mr. Maluleke commend the census leadership for the agility with which they resolve any problems experienced. Logistical difficulties experienced at the beginning of the census, mainly related to systems and processes operating at scale across the entire country, have largely been resolved. Council remains satisfied by the fact that more than 400 000 households registered online and more than a quarter of these households completed the online form. In addition, Stats SA fieldworkers have enumerated about 1.44 million households countrywide using the personal interviewing method. These numbers give assurances that the systems are now working.
- Looking at the number of households that still need to be counted, we have decided to extend the period of enumeration. We have now extended online counting until Friday, 25th February 2022. Those who have registered to be counted over the phone, by availing their contact details will be called and interviewed, otherwise our fieldworkers will continue to visit every dwelling unit to count people through personal interviews. Both personal and telephone interviewing will run concurrently until the 20th March 2022.
- We call on households who registered to complete the form when requested to do so. We also ask that others open their doors to the enumerators to count you in person. Let everyone who is within the borders of South Africa exercise their right and moral duty to raise your hand and be counted.
Issued by Statistics South Africa
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