Afghan refugee census extended till 10th
ISLAMABAD: The Pakistani government and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) have decided to extend the first ever Afghan refugee census till March 10 due to bad weather.
The census was scheduled to be completed on March 4. The counting has almost been done in almost all parts of the country but there are some small pockets of Afghan population that needed to be counted, UN and government officials said in a joint press conference on Thursday.
Dr Rozina Tufail, federal parliamentary secretary of statistics division, and Indrika Ratwatte, UNHCR representative, told reporters that census had been extended till March 10 in Balochistan, and March 6 in Punjab, Sindh and the NWFP.
Data collected by 2,640 enumerators hired by the government is being transferred to a processing centre in Islamabad every day and full results will be available by the middle of this month, said Ratwatte.
The census, conducted by the government’s Population Census Organisation with the UNHCR assistance, is listing all Afghans living in Pakistan who arrived after Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979.
“Expected output of the census will lead to the establishment of an accurate statistical record of Afghans living in various parts of Pakistan; development of a database and profile; and categorisation of the Afghan population,” said Dr Rozina.