Ethiopia’s parliament has postponed the Fourth National Population and Housing Census by one year due to natural and man-made challenges.
The National Population and Housing Census were initially scheduled to take place during the previous 2017-2018 Ethiopian fiscal year and eventually postponed last year for the current Ethiopian 2018/19 fiscal year.
It was on Monday postponed for a second time due to recurrent natural disasters and man-made security challenges that affected parts of the East African country, according to a motion presented to the joint parliament house.
Despite some members of the parliament argued for a short term delay to the previously postponed national census, claiming improving security situation across the country, the joint session passed with a majority vote.
Amid recurrent security challenges that affected parts of Ethiopia since the second half of 2016, the Ethiopian House of Peoples Representatives – the lower house of the Ethiopian parliament – had last year decided to postpone both the national census and local elections for a one-year duration as security challenges also led close to 3 million citizens to forced displacement across the country.
The decision on Monday also came as the Ethiopian government finalized preparations to undertake Ethiopia’s first ever digital technology-assisted national population and housing census, which also includes the application of modern Chinese technology mobile registration procedures.
The Ethiopian Central Statistics Agency (CSA), which undertakes the census, had previously disclosed that close to 180,000 tablets have been purchased from Chinese technology giants, Huawei and Lenovo, to effectively conduct the census.