Premium Times (Abuja)

30 December 2013

Cote d'Ivoire: Gbagbo's Party Seeks Further Postponement of National Population Census

The Ivorian Popular Front, FPI, party of former President Laurent Gbagbo, has called for further postponement of the county's national population census to ensure credibility and reliability.

This was contained in a statement by the party in Abidjan on Monday.

The government had announced that the exercise would hold from November 4 to December 3, 2013.

However, no official reason was given by the government for its inability to carry out the exercise as scheduled.

The FPI said the call for further postponement was due to massive movement of Ivorian populations out of the country.

The party said that many Ivorians, who fled the country during the post-election crisis, were still on exile.

The FPI said that the outcome of any census carried out while many Ivorians were still on exile would be incorrect and unreliable.

"Looking at the situation, it is clear that the conditions for a successful census are far from being met. Carrying out a census at the moment will be inappropriate, the result will be far from the reality," it said.

The party further listed the pockets of insecurity in some part of the country as another reason why the exercise should further be postponed.

"Government needs to first ensure that the country is reconciled and truly peaceful. Our citizens on exile need to return and be counted," the FPI said.

The government announced that the exercise would cost 12 billion CFA (N4.04 billion).

Cote d'Ivoire, a former French colony and world's largest cocoa beans producer, was hit by a political crisis reported to have caused the death of no fewer than 3,000 persons.

(NAN)

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