Dearth of sufficient data to blame for slow development in S. Sudan- official

Dearth of sufficient data to blame for slow development in S. Sudan- official

South Sudan’s data system ranks among the lowest in the region, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said.

This, the department said, is affecting key decision-making decisions, especially on development in the country.

The NBS’ Director General of Administration and Finance, Nugent Dobo, attributed the country’s lack of accurate statistics dearth of finance and qualified human resources. Lack of legislation to enforce data gathering, and a failure to comply are also other factors affecting the process.

“It is serious. It is not easy. Every process of collecting data needs money. So, we have to have more budget if we are to move forward. Without money, we will do nothing completely,” Dobo said.

He was speaking during Africa Statistics Day.

Dobo said insecurity and inaccessibility challenges have led to NBS’s incapacity to collect, manage, and process the data needed to make informed decisions, especially, to address humanitarian crises.

Dobo was speaking during the celebration of Africa Statistics Day in Juba on Friday. The event was organised by the NBS with support from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

The country continues to estimate the trend of its population growth using the 2008 Sudan national household and population census, projecting the current population at around 13 million.

In 2021, the cabinet directed all government institutions to establish statistical units to collect and preserve data in their respective institutions. But most of the institutions defied the order, according to Dobo.

However, the Director-General of Agricultural Development in the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, John Anyek, called for the enforcement of the data collection process as well as ensuring the institutions comply with the cabinet’s directive. “The challenges portrayed here by the national bureau of statistics clearly declared how difficult it is to collect data,” Anyek said, adding that “there is a need to push for the enactment of the NBS act, which has gotten stuck in parliament, to enforce data collection.”