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Minister, Hundreds of Households Left Out of Population Census

Some Zimbabweans are crying foul for being left out of the just-ended national population census saying they have not yet been counted despite claims by the Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (Zimstat) that a recent mop-up exercise was a big success.

Hundreds of households in various provinces claim that they have not been visited by enumerators following the completion of the exercise last week.

People in areas such as Matabeleland North's Lupane District, Mhondoro in Mashonaland West, and major cities - Harare and Bulawayo - told VOA they are yet to be counted.

Zimstat officials last week reported that they had successfully completed a so-called mop-up exercise but now say the process will continue this week.

National census manager Washington Mapeta said people who have not yet been counted should contact enumerators or visit the deparment's offices in all provinces.

Mapeta said some households were left out as the exercise had to be conducted in a timely manner in order to get accurate data.

Deputy Justice Minister and Harare resident Obert Gutu, who had been exluded in the exercise and threatened to sue Zimstat, was today counted by enumerators at his home.

Gutu said excluding Zimbabweans from the national count is a violation of the rights of citizens.

The minister said he will press, along with other government officials, for Zimstat to account for Zimbabweans who were left out of the exercise.

Former lawmaker Njabuliso Mguni of Lupane East said in his area 108 homesteads were not visited by enumerators "and there is no clear indication why the homesteads were left out".

Mguni said there was no indication from local enumerators if the villages would be counted.
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