25 Nov 2009

New Caledonia doubts accuracy of census

11:13 am on 25 November 2009

The New Caledonian government has asked France not to approve officially the findings of the census in the territory released two weeks ago.

The territory's President, Philippe Gomes, says the gathering of the data was accompanied by a range of problems, such as strikes, a flu outbreak and a high turnover of enumerators.

He noted that despite evidence of urban drift, almost half of Noumea's neighbourhoods showed a drop in population.

Mr Gomes says 12 percent of households were left out of the census.

The figures published this month showed a population increase in the past five years of just under 15,000.