Mozambique at forefront of improving population registration

Report
from UN Children's Fund
Published on 02 Jun 2014 View Original

MAPUTO, 2 June 2014 - With more than 2.5 million children unregistered and the causes of over 300,000 deaths unknown in the country, Mozambique has embarked on an ambitious plan to address the civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) needs of its population.

Together with key cooperation partners, the Government launched a reform of CRVS in 2000, highlighting the need for the recognition and institutionalisation of traditional and religious marriages to end discrimination of illegitimate and legitimate children. Civil registration provides the legal basis for individual identity and creates a data source of vital statistics including live births and deaths, allowing countries to identify their health issues.

Mozambique has over time been devastated by several phenomenon such as colonization (until 1975), civil war (1976-1992) and natural disasters, which caused a massive defection of qualified personnel, the destruction of infrastructures, internal displacement, and hence, the loss and deterioration of registration archives and capacities. Despite these challenges, the Government of Mozambique multiplied its initiatives for increasing and improving systems of population registration and enhancing vital statistics within the country.

Currently, Mozambique intends to be at the forefront of improving CRVS systems as a result of deliberations passed by the Conference of African Ministers and the African Symposiums on Statistics, using information and communication technologies or designing an integrated CRVS system.

UNICEF and WHO, working together through the Delivering as One approach, are supporting the Government in its plans, helping increase coverage of and raising awareness about birth and death registration in the country. In 2012, for instance, the Netherlands, through UNICEF, donated $13 million, a result of which 12 million children were registered. The UN is also strongly engaged in the biannual National Health Weeks, which besides offering vaccination and other health services to children and mothers, now also include registration services. In 2013, 780 000 children under 5 years of age were registered.

In April this year, Mozambique presented a case study and its national investment plan during a high-level CRVS meeting in Addis Ababa, which was organized by WHO, together with UNECA, the World Bank Group, and sponsored by the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD). Mozambique’s work on CRVS is a good example of inter-sectorial collaboration, showing initiative and leadership in this area, with support from the UN.

Additional information can be found at below links:
Mozambique case study: http://www.who.int/healthinfo/civil_registration/TechnicalConsultation_A...
The investment plan: http://www.worldbank.org/en/topic/health/publication/global-civil-regist...

For more information, please contact:

Gabriel Pereira, UNICEF Mozambique,
Email: maputo@unicef.org