Nigeria's first National Census in ten years got under way on Sunday (25 November), and reports from the various state capitals said the count was proceeding without a hitch.
GV Census officials arrive at Gowon residence
SV Gowon family outside their house
CU ZOOM out & pan from census official bag to Gowon & family talking with officials he writes down particulars (3 shots)
LV crowd around doorway
CU PAN General Gowan having thumb painted
LV Ext house
SV & CU census official walks to village house and talks with man (2 shots)
CU man has thumb painted while official records details in book (2 shots)
CU Pan child has thumb painted
CU & LV Census officials with pamphlets "make sure you are counted" walks through village (2 shots)
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Background: Nigeria's first National Census in ten years got under way on Sunday (25 November), and reports from the various state capitals said the count was proceeding without a hitch.
The Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, and his household were among the first Nigerians to be counted.
About 150,000 enumerators and an equal number of soldiers are taking part in the exercise, to ascertain Nigeria's actual population. Two previous controversial counts in the early 1960's put the country's population at 56 million.
The census, the third since independence, is a priority item in the Army's timetable for return to civilian rule. It's one of the nine points the Army says must be accomplished before they hand over power to civilians in 1976 -- after ten years of military rule. Other stated tasks include the drafting of a new constitution, the holding of nationwide elections and the eradication of bribery and corruption.
Although listed on the Army's political programme, the government says this year's census is merely a routine technical exercise aimed at assembling vital statistics for planning the country's even and rapid development. Former census generated political upheavals because they determined the distribution of seats in the Federal parliament.
The census began on Sunday after a massive publicity campaign by the National Census Board.
Hundreds of bicycles, boats and even donkeys have been hired to enable enumerators to reach the remote and relatively in accessible areas of Nigeria, especially parts of the drought-stricken northern states where millions of people are reported to be wandering in search of food and water.
In a last-minute appeal to the nation, General Gowon warned: "Nigeria simply cannot afford another controversial census count."
The first results of the count are expected early in January.