The Deputy Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, Prof George Gyan-Baffour has yesterday launched the Ghana Statistical Service Week and the African Statistics Day in Accra with the assurance that government would remove all constraints through various policy mechanisms that could increase the economy's capacity for expansion, investment, labour absorption and export.
The week dubbed, 'Developing Statistically Literate Society', is set aside to reflect on the services' major achievements and also involve the public and other stakeholders in assessing the betterment of the service. The week which is described as stock-taking week would indeed help the service conduct an objective assessment in its accomplishments.
Speaking to journalists at the launching Prof Gyan-Baffour noted that with a society highly literate in statistics, the nation can move along faster on the road to middle income status, employing policies that are backed by good statistics.
The Deputy Minister observed that the focus on statistical literacy is strategic because this year marks the beginning of the institution of a National Strategy for the Development of Statistics in Ghana.
He said lack of funds, technical expertise, political will and commitments to the development of statistics among others are several factors that account for the weak state of the National Statistical System in Africa.
He pointed out that one problem that has continued to plague official statistics is quality and timely release of data, saying that there is the need to find out the factors that influence the release and dissemination of data and how these delays can be minimised if not completely eliminated.
The Government Statistician, Mrs Grace Bediako said the service would present to the public the initial outcome of an initiative that would allow researchers, students and other data users to generate their own table online, from all GSS regional offices.
The Chairman of the function who is also the Deputy Minister for Information and National Orientation, Hon Frank Agyekum asked the media to educate the public on statistics in order to have an informed publics.