Companies Look to Supply 180,000 Tablets for Census


Six international and one local IT firm are competing to supply the tablets




The Central Statistical Agency (CSA) is buying 180,000 digital tablets for use in the upcoming national census. This will be the first time where such electronics materials will be used for census.

The budget for the procurement will come from the three billion Birr budget allocated for the census. The tablets will cost over an estimated one billion Birr.

The Public Procurement & Property Disposal Services conducted a restricted international bid on behalf of CSA. The Agency, in a letter written in October 2010, requested the procurement to be conducted and concluded by at least April 2017.

Eleven international firms were invited to participate, and seven agreed to take part.

The seven companies, originating from Ethiopia, the United States and China, submitted their technical and financial proposals to the Service. The bidding companies were ZTE ICT, Lenovo PC HK Ltd, Java Computer, Safe Guard Technology, Huwawei from China, Tecno Mobile from Ethiopia and USBAK from the United States. All the companies (except Safe Guard which offers Weihang and Gtied branded tablets) are offering their own brand name tablets. The technical documents were opened on December 9 at the Procurement Service’s offices.

The specifications were prepared with consultation from experts from the Ministry of Communication & Information Technology (MoCIT), and the Information Network & Security Agency (INSA).

During the technical opening, companies presented security bid bonds amounting to 100,000 Br, with compliance sheets and their brands specifications. Although the bidders were required to present technical and financial documents separately, USBAK submitted a single document, and was instructed to reseal their proposals separately.

Two weeks ago, the National Census Commission announced that it had begun conducting a pilot census in 260 designated places in all regional states and city administrations.

The National Census Commission was established to supervise the census. The Central Statistics Agency (CSA) carries out technical works like preparation of census maps, questionnaires and data analysis.

“The pilot census will provide us with the opportunity to test our data collection scheme,” Biratu Yigezu, told Fortune.

In the pilot census, 220 of the selected places will be counted using tablets while 40 will be counted on paper. Close to 350 people will be deployed to carry out the census.

The Commission plans to conduct the upcoming Ethiopian Population and Housing Census in November 2017, at the same time all over the country. Forty pc of the allocated budget is expected to come from international donors.

According to the country’s constitution, censuses must take place every decade. The first, done in 1984, estimated Ethiopia’s population to be 42.6 million. Ten years later, the figure was up to 53.5 million. The third census took place in 2007, showing that population had jumped to 73.8 million.

The CSA has projected the population to reach 94.3 million by the end of the current fiscal year.



By DAWIT ENDESHAW
FORTUNE STAFF WRITER

Published on Dec 13,2016 [ Vol 17 ,No 867]


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