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New statistician-general: NBS to begin data production on migration, IDPs

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has stated that it will expand its scope to produce data on migration, internally displaced persons (IDPs) and security.

This was stated on Wednesday by Semiu Adeniran, statistician-general of the federation and chief executive officer of NBS at his inauguration ceremony in Abuja.

Recall that Semiu Adeniran was appointed last week following the demise of Simon Harry, former statistician-general of the federation, on April 13.

According to him, expanding the scope of data would ensure that the NBS delivered on its mandate of producing “relevant and adequate” information for policy decision making.

“As the role of national statistics offices across the world expands in the modern-day data ecosystem, we will focus on building our capacity to produce further insight and knowledge base,” Adeniran said. 

”We will also expand the scope of our statistical product to reflect the recent development in the macro and socio-development space.

“In this light, in the coming months, we will begin the process of producing statistics on new areas such as migration, IDPs and data on security.

“All these are issues currently on the front burner of the political sphere and prominent in the hearts of citizens and policymakers, hence we need to play our role as the authoritative source of official data in this regard.”

Adeniran noted that the late statistics-general’s tenure, though brief, was impactful as he committed to consolidating his achievement.

“We will go forward together in line with the three-point agenda set by Dr S.B Harry, namely general administration and human resources management, infrastructure development and sound technical operations,” he said. 

“I will seek to consolidate on the achievement he recorded. The current structure of the office will be maintained and where possible improved on as the need arises.

“Hence our initial focus will be on strengthening our technical operations by enhancing staff capacity to accurately produce, disseminate and interpret statistics to inform policy design in Nigeria.”

Adeniran said the capacity enhancement would be done through organised training and courses both locally and internationally, on the job learning and in-house coaching by knowledgeable staff of the office.

He added that where necessary, external experts will be contacted to provide support to the staff of the bureau.

According to him, the initiative was aimed at closing existing technical gaps already identified across the departments.

“This will also expand existing capacity to ensure that as a system, we are able to cope adequately with the ever-increasing demand for data,” Adeniran added. 

The NBS boss said the bureau would accelerate its ongoing work with the World Bank in revising its methodology for producing labour force statistics in Nigeria.

According to him, this would ensure that NBS moves to a system where it generates, on a sustainable basis, adequate quarterly statistics on the labour market in Nigeria, to inform the government on their job creation efforts.

He said in the coming weeks, the bureau would begin the process of rebasing the consumer price index (CPI) and the reweighting of the consumption basket.

“As we all know, the rebasing of the gross domestic estimates is also one that has been talked about in recent times,” the NBS boss said. 

“With the ongoing National Agriculture Sample Census (NASC), which is intended to serve as a major input to the process, we will ensure that both NASC and all other surveys and administrative data collection efforts were completed successfully in preparation for the rebasing sometime next year.”

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