Home affairs issues 34 000 documents through mass registration

Home National Home affairs issues 34 000 documents through mass registration
Home affairs issues 34 000 documents through mass registration

KATIMA MULILO – The ministry of home affairs has registered more than 34 000 people for national documents since the introduction of the mass registration exercise in February this year.

The overwhelming figures come after the Ministry of Home Affairs, Immigration, Safety and Security initiated outreach programmes in the country’s 14 regions for issuing national

The exercise which on 5 February, and is
expected to run until July this year. 

Home affairs spokesperson Margaret Kalo said the outreach programme is to ensure the ministry increases registration coverage for national documents, especially to specific groups such as those in hard-to-reach areas, vulnerable communities and schools.  “As part of the mass registration campaign countrywide, the ministry also made a provision to exempt at least 500
people per constituency for birth certificates and ID cards. These can be vulnerable people in society and those affected by disasters such as fire, among others. “National documents are very important and provide a sense of belonging, as well as establish a person’s legal identity,” she emphasised.

Equally, national documents are necessary for one to access services such as education, employment and social grants.  The ministry is urging communities in all 14 regions, who for some reason are not registered but have the correct supporting documents, to approach the nearest office to register their births and to obtain identity cards. The registration for the national documents includes birth registration for all ages.
It also covers applications for duplicate birth certificates, as well as applications for identity documents. Those applying for duplicate identity documents may also be assisted.
Kalo stressed the importance of mothers registering children immediately after birth. She cited Section 15 of the Namibian Constitution, which provides that children have the right from birth to a name, the right to acquire a nationality and, subject to legislation enacted in the best interests of children as far as possible, the right to know and be cared for by their parents.  “Birth registration is therefore a human right. It establishes the child’s legal identity, which, together with the ascertainment of that child’s citizenship, is essential for accessing a range of services such as education, healthcare and social protection. Moreover, birth registration provides vital statistical data that informs policy and planning at national and international levels. 

“Provision is made for all children from 0-12 months to be registered at state hospital-based offices, in all the 14 regions of the country. Children from 12 months and above can be registered at any home affairs office in the regions. 

“Registration for persons aged six years and above can be done at any home affairs office in the regions of their birth for faster and easier verification. Government will continue to prioritise birth registration as a key component of the development agenda and invest in the necessary infrastructure, human resources and policies, to ensure that every child is registered at birth.” she said.

At the same time,  the ministry will continue to address the underlying socio-economic and cultural factors that contribute to late birth registration and work towards creating an enabling environment that supports timely birth registration.

–  anakale@nepc.com.na