Statistics Botswana hosted The 2015 Agricultural Census Breakfast Seminar yesterday (24 July 2018) at the Grand Palm hotel. Different Stakeholders, mainly from Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security (MAFS) graced the colloquium and among them was MAFS Permanent Secretary Mr. Jimmy R. Opelo who gave the Keynote address while Statistician General Dr. Burton Mguni articulated welcome notes.
The main objective of the Breakfast Seminar was to receive presentations of the analytical papers from two independent analysts from the Botswana Institute for Development policy Analysis (BIDPA) and the Botswana University of Agriculture & Natural Resources (BUAN).
In his welcome notes Dr. Mguni said he was delighted with the collaboration between Statistics Botswana and the Ministry of Agricultural Development and Food Security for the successful implementation of the 2015 Agricultural Census.
Dr. Mguni pointed out that, to maximize the value from any census data, it is a general practice everywhere that after the release of any census results, interested researchers are invited to further analyze the data available to augment the agricultural statistics information that would have been produced by the National Statistical Organization.
“It is for this reason that Statistics Botswana engaged two researchers to conduct an in-depth analysis of the crop and livestock subsectors from the 2015 Agricultural Census results”, he said
The SG also stated that The 2015 Agricultural Census results were first disseminated through a Statistical Brief in December 2016 where its results were publicized through radio and Television interviews whereas the main census report was released and publicized through the Statistics Botswana website.
Dr. Mguni further noted that Botswana has been generating national agricultural statistics since 1967 with the Agricultural Censuses conducted on a 10 years interval as part of the Statistics Botswana’s intercensal programme of household surveys.
For his part, Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Permanent Secretary (PS) Mr. Jimmy R. Opelo said it is through annual agricultural surveys and censuses data on agricultural sector production indicators and other relevant statistics pertaining to agriculture are availed to inform development processes.
“These indicators and other relevant statistics are useful in the formulation, monitoring and evaluation of agricultural policies, programmes and projects such as ISPAAD and LIMID, amongst others”, said Mr. Opelo.
The PS indicated that his Ministry is developing an Agriculture Sector Statistics Plan (ASSP) which is expected to assist various Departments in the Ministry to provide timely and quality agricultural statistics.
He also stated that his Ministry and Statistics Botswana are working on a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to further strengthen their collaboration.
“This MoU is expected to will clearly define the roles of each of the Parties in the process of production of agricultural statistics”, he said.