PM: Let’s use data to make critical development decisions

PRIME Minister Kassim Majaliwa on Saturday launched the 2022 National Population and Housing Census (PHC) reports, challenging all Tanzanians to use the data in making critical development decisions.

Mr Majaliwa launched reports on population distribution by age and sex and that of distribution by administrative areas at the State University of Zanzibar (SUZA), Tunguu.

“These reports are full of key population indicators, which are helpful to all stakeholders,” said the premier, arguing that the information will help the government in preparation for the national 2050 development vision.

Highlighting some of the key findings of the census, Premier Majaliwa said urban population has increased to 35 per cent in 2022 from 30 per cent in 2012 but the rate of rural-urban migration declined to 4.8 per cent in the 2012-2022 period from the 5.2 per cent in the 2002-2012 period.

Mr Majaliwa, who is National Census Committee Chairperson, attributed the decline desire to move to urban centres to the government efforts to provide all essential social services and amenities to rural areas.

“The government has invested heavily in improvement of infrastructure and social services in rural areas; people no longer see incentive to move to urban centres,” he said.

The PM said the country’s population under the age of 18 decreased to 49 per cent in 2022 from 50.1 per cent in 2012, while Zanzibar’s under 18 population decreased from 49 to 47 per cent under the period.

Over 50 per cent of Tanzanians, according to the August 2022 Census, are in the 15-64 age group, which the premier described as a good development indicator.

“Demographically, this is the working age; so the country has a huge and active labour force, which catalyses the building of strong economy,” said Premier Majaliwa.

The data further show that the rate of primary school enrollment increased to 95.9 per cent last year as compared to 94.6 per cent in 2012.

Report on water supply predicts a bright future for the Tanzanian population, with 99.5 per cent of all households having access to water sources; 67.8 per cent of them already developed and 31.7 per cent undeveloped.

The quality of settlements has improved during the past one decade, with the report showing that 63.3 per cent of Tanzanians have houses of quality walls; 84.7 per cent of houses have quality roofs and 59.9 per cent have quality floors.

Premier Majaliwa directed all government departments to make good use of the reports in their development plans, appreciating an increasing demand of detailed population statistics by various development stakeholders in and outside the country.

“These reports give a full picture of population distribution by administrative areas, age and gender.”

Zanzibar Second Vice-President Hemed Suleiman Abdulla Co-chair of the census committee described the 2022 census as unique, with focus on sustainable development, directing all public offices to use the data in their development plans. “These information are highly valuable but only if they are adequately used,” he said.

He ordered all government executives to ensure that their plans take into consideration the census data.

The National Census Commissar Anna Makinda described the 2022 census as highly inclusive, saying with the exception of 0.01 per cent, all Tanzanians were counted. “These reports are ours because we were both counted; let us all think and act statistically to accelerate our social and economic development.”

A retired Speaker of the National Assembly, Ms Makinda termed the reports as a gold mine for every Tanzanian. “Let these reports guide us to see and use available opportunities; they are a gold mine for every one of us,” she said.

President Samia Suluhu Hassan launched the August 2022 National Population and Housing Census first report on October 31, 2022, putting the Tanzanian population at 61,741,120.

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