Census: Methodist Church Protests Exclusion of Religion From Questionnaire

Lagos, Nigeria -- METHODIST Church Nigeria has protested the federal government's directive to the National Population Commission (NPC) that tribe and religion should be excluded from its 2005 population census questionnaire.

The church, in a communique issued at the end of the 43rd synod of the Lagos Diocese, said any final report of the census without these data would continue to give a distorted picture of the country to the citizenry and the world at large.

It urged the federal government to make necessary resources available to the NPC to make the census a huge success.

The church congratulated government for organising the National Political Reform Conference but criticised the "no-go areas enshrined in the terms of reference."

"It was the considered opinion of the synod that such issues as religion, tribe and sharia should be thoroughly debated at the conference judging from the experience of the Kano and Kaduna religious riots," the communique stated.