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Accurate statistics crucial— Saulos Chilima

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State Vice-President Saulos Chilima has said the use of accurate data and statistics could be crucial for national development in African countries, in that they help to reflect the exact needs for implementation of strategic policies.

Chilima, who is also Minister of Economic Planning and Development which also oversees National Statistical Office operations, was speaking yesterday when he virtually addressed the African Regional Forum on Sustainable Development being held in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The meeting, running from March 1 to 4, has been organised by the United Nations Economic and Social Council in conjunction with the Economic Commission for Africa.

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Addressing a special panel that discussed the use of data and statistics for evidence-based and inclusive sustainable recovery and building forward after Covid, Chilima said data and statistics were key to achieving national development strategies.

Sharing Malawi’s status on data collection, analysis and dissemination, Chilima said the Government of Malawi regularly conducts its Population and Housing Census (PHC) every 10 years, the Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) every five years, among others, saying the tools help the government plan and respond to citizens’ needs accurately.

“The use of our country’s Computer Assisted Personal Interbrains (CAPI) in data collection has also improved the quality of data and enhanced the generation, management and dissemination of accurate data,” Chilima said.

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Chilima further said, as a result of Malawi’s improved statistical system, the government regularly reviews and reports on progress in the implementation of the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy and Africa Agenda 2063 as well as other strategic sectoral policies.

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