Abuja – Dr Isiaka Olarewaju, the Director, Real Sector and Household Statistics, National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), has appealed to Nigerians to cooperate with the bureau’s field officers in their bid to get credible data.
Olarewaju, who made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja said delayed response was one of the challenges of the bureau.
According to him, response rate from establishments is a challenge, we should be mindful that the questionnaire will be filled by human beings.
“And if you want to get information within three weeks and the questionnaire is not returned till after five weeks, you will be unable to analyse that particular one.
“It is not every time we get 100 per cent response, our response rate is sometimes not encouraging, particularly when time is limited.’’
Olarewaju said when collecting data at the household level, the field data collectors faced different types of hazards.
He said the field workers were expected to collect data from the rural, urban and even deep to reach places, thus, exposed to different hazards.
The director explained that being an election year, it was not advisable to send a data collector to the field so close to the election date as they may be misinterpreted.
“Somebody who has empathy for a particular political group will rather say things to suit his party rather than addressing the main issue.
“And then sometimes they attack you because you are from government side thinking that once you are from government, then you belong to the party in government.
“Things like that tend to always increase refusal rate when conducting survey near election time.’’
He said there were seasonal challenges such that the collector may want to go take data from a particular location but would not be able due to a natural disaster like flood.
According to Olarewaju, there is also communal clashes, when two communities are at war or there is disagreement between them and your domain of data collection cuts across the two.
“When they happen to see you on one side and you are coming over to the other side it becomes a problem.
“You could even be regarded as a spy, because you were spotted coming from the opponents territory not knowing you are only in search of data,’’ he said.