BAGUIO CITY – The Cordillera office of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) called on all residents of the region to cooperate with the month-long population census that will start on Monday, August 10 in order for the agency to be able to extract the right data from the ground to serve as guide for policy-makers and decision-makers in the formulation of development plans among others beneficial to the greater majority of the Filipinos.
Engr. Olivia Gulla, PSA-CAR interim regional director, said some 2,478 enumerators, team supervisors, area supervisors among others will be deployed regionwide to undertake the mid-decade census which will end up on September 6 purposely to update the country’s rapidly growing population at the middle of the decade.
The PSA-CAR official warned those who refuse to cooperate with the census by misleading their enumerators that they stand to face the imposition of stiffer penalties such as imprisonment for at least one year and the payment of a fine of at least P100,000.
Based on the results of the 2010 population census, the region’s total population was estimated to be over 1.6 million with an average annual population growth of 1.7 percent.
“We appeal to our people to accord our enumerators the needed respect and give them the appropriate data being asked from the questionnaire given to them so that we will be able to ascertain the actual population of the region by the middle of the decade,” Gulla stressed.
She disclosed enumerators going around the barangays regionwide will be in their proper uniform and will be using the issued identification card, saying that the enumerators assigned in the barangays will pay a courtesy call to barangay officials for them to extend the utmost assistance to them for the successful conduct of the census in their respective villages.
While there are isolated incidents where the enumerators are not being assisted by barangay officials for obvious political reasons, Gulla admitted that most local governments in the region recognize the importance of the census results, thus, local officials also give their counterparts by extending assistance to the enumerators, especially in providing their logistics for the successful census in their places.
According to her, the census results will be used in the creation of additional congressional districts, the apportioning of the internal revenue allotment (IRA), the creation of barangays, municipalities among others.
Among the difficulties encountered by enumerators on the ground include the non-cooperation of the people in some of the houses, the difficulty of the terrain in some remote barangays, the enumerators are usually chased and bitten by dogs and the arrogance of those being asked the questions.
On the other hand, Gulla recognized a few local governments that are cooperative and supportive of the census considering that they extend the support needed to make sure that the enumerators will be safe in the barangays as they provided added rain gear and supplies for them to be able to continue their activities even up to the farthest areas in their places.
It was learned that it will take at least 30 minutes for an enumerator to be able to accomplish the answers to the questionnaire from one household, thus, it will be up to an enumerator to plan out the needed strategies on how to complete the census results within the prescribed period of time for them to be able to complete the census. By Dexter A. See