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Local govt’s birth certificates illegal, says NPC

The National Population Commission (NPC) has said all birth certificates issued by local government authorities and hospitals are not acceptable for official purposes in the country.

The Commission insisted that only the birth certificates it issued are acceptable as it remains the only agency legally authorised to issue such documents in the country.

NPC’s Ebonyi State Director, Edward Ogbu, stated this during a review meeting and retraining of the state’s health facility workers on birth registration service delivery.

The meeting, which was held with the support and collaboration of the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), took place at Citi Hub Events Centre in Abakaliki, the state capital.

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It was attended by health workers from all the local government areas, who represented the health facilities.

Ogbu solicited the help of government and health workers in mobilizing parents to register their children.

UNICEF Chief of Field Office in Enugu, Ibrahim Conteh, regretted that recent records showed that child registration in the country was still very low.

Quoting the National Demographic Health Survey, 2018, Conteh said 57 per cent of children in Nigeria do not have their births registered.

Represented by a child protection specialist with UNICEF, in Enugu, Mr. Victor Atuchukwu, the Chief of Field Office said of the 43 per cent registered births, only 62 per cent were registered with NPC.

“Twenty-six per cent are registered with private clinic/hospitals, nine per cent are registered with Local Government Administration while three per cent are registered with other authorities,” he said.