The National Population Commission (NPC) has embarked on the compilation of a comprehensive database on births and deaths from 2004-2019.
The Chairman of the commission’s Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (CRVS), Dr Tayo Olatunji, said on Tuesday in Lokoja that the database would be ready by the end of the year.
Olatunji spoke at the opening of a two-day workshop for 2014 and 2015 scanned vital registration forms.
He said the registrations, which were done in analogue form, were being scanned and transferred electronically to a database.
Olatunji, a former Director-General of the NPC, said that vital registrations for 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008 had already been scanned and transferred electronically into the database.
He said that the scanning and transmission of vital statistics outstanding from 2009 to 2013 would commence as soon as money was released by the Federal Government.
According to him, the exercise is strenuous and challenging, but it has to be done for the country to be at par with other developed nations.
The NPC boss said that the statistics being worked upon now were mainly birth and death registrations from the 774 local governments in the country.
“Since we have been writing them in analogue forms, they are not useful until they are put together in electronics form,” he said.
Olatunji said that the organisation had since stopped the collection of vital statistics in analogue form, adding that the decision to go fully digital would help to change the direction of civil registration in Nigeria.
He charged participants, who were mostly ICT staff of the Commission, to take the workshop seriously by taking advantage of the training to improve their knowledge.
The Commissioner, representing Kogi State on the board of the Commission, Prof. Jimoh Isah, said that researchers, planners and manufacturers were among those who would benefit from the database when finally released at the end of the year.
Gov. Yahaya Bello, while declaring the workshop open, emphasised the importance of vital statistics to planning and policy formulations.
Bello, represented by his Special Adviser on SDGs, Mr Abdulmumini Okara, said that vital statistics was very key to the realisation of meeting SDG targets by countries.
According to him, the state has established befitting centres and create awareness across the state to ensure prompt and adequate registration of births and deaths.