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Census: Questions KNBS wants you to answer

Friday August 23 2019

Census preparations

Census preparations: An enumerator knocks at the gate of a home in Kapsoya Estate, Eldoret Town, Uasin Gishu County, during a pre-enumeration exercise on August 22, 2019. Census kicked off on the night of August 24. PHOTO | JARED NYATAYA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

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It is now just hours away from the start of the countrywide headcount of persons conducted by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS).

This will be Kenya's sixth national census since Independence that kicks off on the night August 24 and extends up to August 31, 2019 and is expected to cover more than 12 million households.

The purpose of the exercise is to get reliable and detailed data on the size and distribution of the population in the country, as well as the living conditions and access to basic services at a specified time. This information will help in the process of planning, resource allocation and policy formulation for development.

Broadly, the questions will cover age, sex, physical location, education, labour force, ICT and household assets.

But what specific information will the enumerators be seeking from you? Here, we highlight what the questionnaire will cover.

  • Where do you live?


You are expected to state the county, sub-county, division, location, sub-location and ward where you live.

  • Have you gone to school?

On education, the enumerators will seek to establish the highest level of education attained by each member of your household. Specifically, the census will list the grade per level of education attained. This question will only assess members who are three years and older.

  • How many children have you given birth to?

According to KNBS, the question on fertility will be answered by the senior female member of a household, ‘‘preferably in private’’.

All females aged 12 and above will be required to state the number of infants they have given birth to and those that may have died.

  • What gender are you?

For the first time intersex persons will be counted, following a landmark court order five years ago. So, you will have to state whether you are male, female or intersex.

  • What kind of habitat do you dwell in?

You will be asked to give details of what type of house you live in. Are the walls made of iron sheets, timber, stone or mud bricks? You will also state the type of roofing used. Is it grass-thatched, iron sheets, clay, plastic or concrete tiles? You are also expected to state if you own the house you live in or you are a tenant.

  • How do you earn your living?

The survey will be assessing the nature of economic activities that you engage in. You are expected to say what you do to earn an income, which industry you work in and the number of hours worked every day. You are also required to state what work you have been engaged in for the last 12 days preceding the census. You will also be required to state whether your occupation is what you trained for.

  • What electronic gadgets do you own or have access to?

Do own a mobile phone, computers or have access to them? Do you have access to the internet? Have you made any online transactions?

  • What are your household assets?

Here the survey will seek to establish what properties you have such as a bicycle, motorcycle, car, or even a boat.

  • Do you farm?

What type of crop farming and the types of crops do you grow? If you keep livestock, you will be required to state whether you rear cows, goats, camels, donkeys or chicken. You will also state whether you keep bees (apiculture) or rear fish (aquaculture).

  • More questions

Where do you get your water?

What do you cook with, liquid petroleum gas, biogas, kerosene, charcoal or firewood?