Local Government & Community Development Department (LG&CDD) Punjab, United Nations International Children Emergency Fund (UNICEF) and Telenor Pakistan have launched a Digital Birth Registration (DBR) Cell on Thursday at the Local Government Complex, Lahore.
The DBR is aimed at achieving universal birth registration where live data flows of birth registration will be available through sophisticated technology.
The live data flows for Bahawalpur and Pakpattan districts have already been set up by UNICEF Country Representative for Pakistan, Ms. Angela Kearney, and Special Secretary LG&CDD, Shahid Nasir Raja.
The birth registration service is currently available, with the help of advanced digital mobile phone technology, in two districts only. However, the target is to expand the project to 8 other districts which show the lowest birth registration rates in 2018.
The Need for Birth Registration
The need for birth registration is crucial. However, Pakistan lacks in this regard. While talking about the need for birth registration, Angela Kearney said:
“The right of the child to birth registration is a fundamental right, and a birth registration certificate is regarded by UNICEF as a passport to protection for all children across the globe.
We congratulate the government of Punjab for prioritizing the registration of children’s births across the province as a development priority, particularly for those left behind and excluded”.
She also appreciated the efforts of Telenor and their technical support in the project and its implementation at the sub-national level.
Shahid Nasir Raja acknowledged the support of UNICEF, he said:
“The government of Punjab is committed to support the achievement of universal birth registration for children aged 17 years and under in target districts of the province before the end of 2024.
As per the obligation enshrined under the Convention on the Rights of the Child, Digitalization is one of the top most priorities of our Government for the enhanced provision of accessible and efficient services to its citizens”.