Saturday, February 4, 2017
Development initiatives in the Isles are hampered by poor statistics-Shein
PRESIDENT Ali Mohamed Shein has said that poor data collection, negligence, and lack of use of statistics in the country are problems hampering Zanzibar’s development initiatives. Dr Shein disclosed this at the opening of the first ever conference on statistics in the Islands, under the theme ‘relevance of statistics, every leader use it for national development.’ He told participants who included leaders, parastatal executives and ministers; “I am not amused with the poor use of statistics and research findings. Dr Shein has appealed to the civil servants to discuss the importance of statistics in national development and government officials at all levels should embark on using data from reliable sources mainly the Office of Chief Government Statistician (OCGS-Zanzibar). The president cautioned that no meaningful national development can take place without use of statistics and research findings, urging the senior civil servants to apply statistics for better planning because it is vital and relevant. Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr Khalid Salum Mohamed, said the conference held at the former House of Representatives debate chamber, Kikwajuni area, follows Dr Shein’s recent directive and call for utilisation of statistics. Dr Mohamed said that his ministry is on track in ensuring proper data collection and utilisations in national planning and development programmes, as the OCGS Director, Ms Mayasa Mahfoudh Mwinyi, mentioned challenges in her office which need to be addressed. “We need skilled labour, equipment, and coordination for proper collections and keeping of records. It is true that you cannot find data in some areas of research just because of lack of equipment, insufficient funds and lack of knowledge about statistics. However, gradually, we have been overcoming the challenges,” Ms Mwinyi said.