Bauchi govt, UNICEF, NPC flag off birth registration campaign
By Rita Michael,
The Bauchi State government in collaboration with the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) and the National Population Commission ( NPC) have flagged off a massive birth registration campaign in Bauchi State.
Governor Mohammed Abubakar while flagging off the exercise at the Banquet hall of the Government House on Thursday, assured that all primary healthcare facilities and government hospitals in the state would have a desk officer dedicated to registration of birth.
The governor added that all relevant state government agencies and departments were to key into the initiative of UNICEF Maternal, New born and Child health and Nutrition (MNCHN) project to ensure that henceforth all births in the state are registered and appropriate certificate issued.
Governor Abubakar advised all parents, caregivers, traditional and religious leaders, as well as opinion leaders to cooperate with the registrars that will go from house to house in the next 10 days from July 6 to 16, 2017 during the campaign period to register all children under five years.
In his address, the NPC Federal Commissioner, Alhaji Hassan Bashir said that the essence of the campaign was to address the low level of birth registration of children between 0 to five years in the state.
"The figure is least in the North East sub-region standing at about 25% of expected number. Such intervention has taken place in two other states (Adamawa and Kebbi ) and since then, the level of registration in those states has boosted to about 70%.
According to him, the exercise will also help in providing an accurate data for proper policies planning by the state and federal government in the areas of health, education and provision of social amenities.
Alhaji Bashir therefore commended Bauchi State government for providing office accommodation for the commission to carry out the exercise.
Also , Chief of Field Office, UNICEF Bauchi, Abdulai Kai-Kai, said that the exercise which is being funded by the Europen Union is a collaborative effort involving UNICEF, the National Population Commission ( NPC), the Bauchi State Ministry of Health and the Primary Healthcare Development Agency.
Kaikai said that the exercise was a practical approach to ensure increase in birth registration coverage in the state, adding, "As of January 2014, about 1,292 health workers in various health facilities across Bauchi State had been trained on birth registration process so that they could support conduct of birth registration efforts in the various health facilities in the state.”
He said, "However, in spite of the support garnered so far and foundation strengthening efforts, the National Population Commission in Bauchi State needs a lot of intensive effort to register thousands of children being missed both at the health facilities and in marginalised, hard-to-reach rural and very rural communities".