Education Principal Secretary Dr Belio Kipsang www.businesstoday.co.ke
Education Principal Secretary Dr Belio Kipsang [photo/courtesy]

The Ministry of E*******n has extended the August School holiday to pave way for the upcoming national census exercise.

The census process which will commence at the night of 24th or 25th August to 31 August 2019 coincides with the 3rd term opening of schools which was set for 26th August 2019. This has led to the government extending the break by one week.

In a circular to regional and county directors of e*******n, E*******n Principal Secretary Dr Belio Kipsang directed that for the third term, schools should be opened on 2nd September and end on 25th October.

During third term candidates for Kenya Certificate for Primary E*******n (KCPE) and Kenya Certificate for Secondary E*******n (KCSE) sit for their national examinations.

“For the forthcoming census to be successful it is the desire of the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) that there be minimum movements of the population so that may get as many people as possible in conventional households,” read part of the circular.

“It is therefore important that we reschedule the opening date…This will enhance that data quality as all students will be captured,” added Dr Kipsang.

This year’s census exercise that is going to cost taxpayers Kshs18.5 billion will be conducted electronically, first of its kind in the country.

The 164,700 electronic devices to be used by the enumerators during the census exercise have been assembled by Moi University and Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT). Each device is set to cost Kshs15,000.

KNBS Director General Zachary Mwangi confirmed that all is set for the paperless counting exercise that will be the first under the 2010 constitution.

“We are very confident about our data-capture program,” Mwangi stated during a briefing at the Kenyatta International Convention Center in Nairobi.

“Build Kenya, buy Kenya, because if you go to Moi and JKUAT today, you will see the kind of a job those young people are doing. You will also be impressed.  So, that was a very strategic decision that we made because we have the capacity and some of these things have been done before in our universities,” he added.

Mr Mwangi further revealed that the census will also capture agricultural activities, a component that was not captured in the 2009 census.

For the first time in the history of Kenya, intersex question, as an option on the s*x category will be included in the upcoming census.

Intersex which is a natural condition has scrapped the usual male and female options in the s*x category.

Among other questions that will be asked during the process are age, ethnicity, nationality, religion, marital status and county of birth.

Kenya carried out the last official census in 2009. At the time, there were 38,610,097 people in the country.

To keep up with possible growth rates, the government releases Kenya’s population census estimates on a regular basis.

As such, 2011 estimates claimed that the number of Kenyans had risen to 41 million with the population hitting 52.57 million in 2019 estimates.

The census results will be released in December 2019.

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