KOTA KINABALU: Telecommunication problems and the spread of Covid-19 are among the main reasons why the percentage of the population census in Sabah is still low compared to other states in the peninsula, said Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Arthur Joseph Kurup.
He said only 20 percent of Sabah’s more than 3.9 million residents had been counted as of Monday (April 5) compared to Johor at 61.8 percent, Perak (58.5 percent), Kelantan (55 percent) and Putrajaya (99.4 percent).
“The figure (20 percent) does not mean that the enumerators are not doing their job well, I understand they have constraints...we (Sabah) are facing problems with the infrastructure and telecommunication networks causing very low response rate towards online census.
“Coupled with the Covid-19 pandemic, we are facing constraints since last year...but I believe the number will increase when the face-to-face census is implemented when the Covid-19 cases subside,“ he said here today.
He spoke to reporters after attending the Malaysia Prihatin: Engagement Session with Enumerators in Borneo programme which was also attended by 2020 Census Commissioner Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin who is also chief statistician.
Arthur said a total of 163 ethnic groups in Sabah including Samar Layun, Tagalog and Biasaya would be involved in the 2020 census compared to 17 ethnic groups in the 2010 census. — Bernama