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NPC Commences Automation Of Birth Registration Centres Across 774 LGAs



…Targets 25m children in 5 years

Joel Ajayi

As part of measures put in place to upscale birth registration in the country, the National Population Commission, NPC said it has commenced the digitization of all the registration centers in the 774 LGA headquarters.

The Chairman of the Commission, Hon. Nasir kwarra disclosed this at a press briefing to mark the 2021 Civil Registration and Vital Statistics Day in Abuja.

He said the Commission was worried about the low rate of birth registration in the country due to the on-going COVVID-19 pandemic that has weakened the structures of the civil registration system in many African countries.

He explained that the ongoing automation process, which is already being piloted in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja is in line with the Vision of African Union leaders and SDG goals.

Kwarra said the Commission currently has 4011 registration centres spread across the 774 Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the country but is working with the development partners to increase it to 8,000 required to achieve optimal result.

Besides this, he said the Commission is also collaborating with most health centres and local governments, whose personnel assist their registrars in collecting information on deaths and births in their facilities.

According to him, currently, about 43% of under- 5 children are registered at birth and not more than 10% of deaths are registered in Nigeria. What this translates into is that many are born and die without leaving a trace of their existence in any legal records in the country.

This he said is attributable to a whole range of causative factors including: but not limited to geographiphic, cultural and traditional reasons.

He expressed optimism that the automation process, when fully automated nationwide, will significantly enhance the operational efficiency of the vital registration system in Nigeria

The NPC boss said the celebration of CRVS Day was in pursuant to the recommendation of conference of Africa Ministers Responsible for Civil Registration held in Nouakchott, Mauritania in 2017 and endorsed by the Executive Council of the African Union the following year.

‘‘The purpose of the celebration was to increase public awareness on the importance of timely registration of vital events, particularly births and deaths, through well-functioning civil registration and vital systems.

‘‘The CRVS Day provides us with an opportunity for a reflection on the legal identity from birth to death of all persons and the realization of key human and civil rights, including the right to participate in society and economy and the right to access social services.

‘‘This can only be attained when the rights and civil liberties are found and strengthened by an efficient and effective civil registration and vital statistics systems that are inclusive, permanent, continuous, compulsory and confidential in nature.’’

In doing so, conscious efforts should be made to ensure that the Civil Registration and Vital Registration System enjoys a broad-based support that leverages the development in information technology, inter-operable and easily accessible to the generality of the people.

Having carefully navigated through its initial teething challenges, he said the Commission now at thick of an effective transformation from manual to wholly digitations, and automation of the CVRS system in Nigeria in an effort to revitalize and upgrade the system in line with the vision of the Africa Programme on Accelerated Improvement of Civil Registration and Vital Statistics.

With the support of World Bank and UNICEF, Kwarra said the Commission has developed a Five-Year Strategic Action Plan (2018-2022).

According to him, the objective of the plan is to enhance the framework for actions and guidance for National, States, LGAs and Community initiatives aimed at ensuring that all vital events are registered.

He called for strong institutional framework, robust governance mechanism and effective coordination among a wide range of governmental and non-governmental stakeholders to accelerate progress towards universal civil registration and integrated identity management system.

He equally called on development partners not to relent in their collaborative efforts with the Commission in the provision of technical and material support towards achieving the desired goal in civil registration and vital statistics system in Nigeria.

In his remarks, the Chief of Child Protection, UNICEF, Ibrahim Sesay said the existence of accurate, regular and reliable statistics is imperative for evidence-based decision making in any country as well as in emergency response.

According to him, more than 50% of births of children under the age of five in Nigeria are still unregistered, which contributes 11% of unregistered births in West Africa.

He said the UNICEF has triggered a scalable process of assisting the NPC to strengthen and accelerate the birth registration service delivery at state and community levels with a focus of registering about 25 million children between 2021 and 2025.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Committee Chairman, Civil Registration and Vital Statistics at NPC, Dr. Ismaila Suleiman said the objective of the celebration was to inspire member states o accelerate the implementation of the civil registration and vital statistics in the continent in line with the global best practices.

Civil registration includes registration of births, deaths, marriages, migration which help in providing statistical data needed in planning the attainment of development goals with the potential to improve the well-being of the people.

Highlight of the event was a practical demonstration of digital registration of a new born baby with the mother.

This year’s celebration is themed: ‘‘Leadership for an essential service: Building resilient civil registration and vital statistics systems in Africa that provides innovative, integrated, and decentralized services for the post-COVID-19 period’’. It is aimed at demonstrating the essential role civil registration and vital statistics system plays in facilitating the recognition of the legal identity for all person as well as providing key data for planning, policy formulation, decision making and good governance.

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Supreme Court give nods to President-elect, Bola Tinubu/Shettima Inaguration



Buhari Meets Tinubu Ahead Of Lagos APC Gov

The Supreme Court has okayed the inauguration of President-elect, Bola Tinubu and Vice President-elect, Kashim Shettima.

The apex court on Friday dismissed the suit by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), seeking the disqualification of Tinubu and Shettima from participating in the 2023 presidential election.

Reading the decision of the court, justice Adamu Jauro held that the PDP’s suit was grossly lacking in merit hence its dismissal.

The court also slammed a fine of N2 million on PDP for poke nosing into the internal affairs of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the conduct of its primary elections and nomination of its candidates.

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