Scrutinizing the Ecuadorian Census: A Question of Accuracy and Credibility
Concerns Raised Over Census Results
Recently, former officials and social activists in Ecuador have expressed reservations over the credibility of the latest population and housing census results. In a statement, these parties have suggested that the evaluation process of the census figures should be conducted by international universities rather than the National Institute of Statistics and Censuses (INEC), citing potential bias and irregularity in the data.
Allegations of Irregularities
The statement cited several inconsistencies and serious allegations that could potentially compromise the authenticity of the results. Critics argue that a significant number of discrepancies have been observed in the census process, thereby making the results questionable. The primary concern revolves around the accuracy of the figures, suggesting that the actual population figures might be significantly different from the reported ones.
Former INEC Director’s Criticism
In a conversation with the digital portal Radio La Calle, former INEC director, Byron Villacis, expressed his concerns. According to him, the census should have encompassed the entire Ecuadorian population. While he acknowledged that it is normal for 2-3% of the population to be left out of such surveys, he indicated a much larger percentage of the population seems to have been omitted in the current census – up to 15% according to his estimations.
Villacis also criticized the methods used to register citizens. He alleged that census workers filled out forms with information obtained via WhatsApp or from neighbors if a household was closed. These non-conventional and arguably unreliable data gathering methods further cast doubt on the accuracy of the census results.
INEC Admits to Challenges
INEC, on its part, has reportedly acknowledged difficulties in executing the census in certain areas, particularly in regions known for high levels of violence. The organization has, however, not yet addressed the other allegations and concerns raised by the former officials and social activists.
Results Released Amidst Doubts
Despite the numerous setbacks and delays, INEC released the census results this week, marking 12 years since the last similar study. The release of the results, however, has been overshadowed by skepticism regarding the accuracy and credibility of the census due to allegations of irregularities and the potential exclusion of a significant portion of the population from the survey.
Critics are now calling for the evaluation to be carried out by international universities to ensure objectivity and accuracy. This demand is fueled by the belief that an impartial third-party evaluation would shed light on the actual situation and possibly drive corrective actions if the allegations are confirmed.
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