Chris Steven, Abuja
Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello has said that the nation’s capital has no authentic population figure noting that what is usually readily available are projections.
The Minister disclosed this when the Chairman of National Population Commission (NPC) Chief Eze Duruiheoma that paid him a courtesy visit in his office.
Malam Bello however charged NPC to get authentic population of the Federal Capital City as well as the entire Federal Capital Territory to aid the FCT Administration provide basic infrastructure appropriately.
He said this would go a long way in assisting the Administration to know where the population is dense to enable the government plan adequately on where to provide the needed infrastructure as Abuja is still construction in progress.
Malam Bello stated that investors and development partners often inquire about the real population of Abuja for the purposes of partnership and what is usually readily available are projections.
“We want to know the population of the Federal Capital City and the entire Federal Capital Territory with correct statistics because that would help for planning purposes”.
We also want to know the percentage ratio as well as the growth of the city and the FCT in general with social data like the population of the youth, sex and even the unemployed,” he said
The Minister assured that the FCT Administration would support the FCT Office of the National Population Commission to achieve all these targets; adding “we will frequently engage the Commission to get and update all these statistics”.
Speaking earlier, the Chairman of the National Population Commission, Chief Eze Duruiheoma said that the Commission planned to conduct National Census for the country in 2017 but has now been shifted to 2018 due to budgetary constraints.
The Chairman urged the FCT Administration to assist the Abuja office of the Commission to continue to carryout vital registration exercise, which includes the birth, death and still birth registration.
Also speaking at the occasion, the Federal Commissioner representing FCT in the NPC, Dr. Aliyu Daniel Kwali, called on the Minister to help establish an administrative framework for continuous vital registration.
He said the NPC has already demarcated Kwali Area Council and that Gwagwalada Area Council would also be demarcated in 2018.
At the 2006 census, the city of Abuja had a population of 776,298,making it one of the ten most populous cities in Nigeria.
According to the United Nations, Abuja grew at the rate of 139.7% between 2000 and 2010, making it the fastest growing city in the world.[ As of 2015, the city is still experiencing an annual growth of at least 35%, still retaining its position as the fastest growing city on the African continent and one of the fastest in the world.