UNICEF laments 33% birth registration coverage in Nigeria

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UNICEF says only 33 per cent of children under five in Nigeria that are registered at birth have birth certificates.

The UNICEF Chiellp  Field Officer in Kano, Mr Rahama Rihood Mohammed Farah, who made this known to newsmen during a meeting with Kano Stakeholders on Digital Birth Registration held in Grand Central Hotel, Kano, on Thursday, noted that the statistics was based on Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) 2021.

Mr. Farah, represented by Michael Banda, said that ensuring birth registration of children under age of five had proved to be a major way of protecting children and child rights, adding that birth registration has been accorded great priority in attaining sustainable development goals.

He said though Nigeria has made progress at birth registration, a lot needs to be done in ensuring that children under five are being registered.

He explained that UNICEF would continue to support Nigerian government through the National Population Commission NPC to explore innovative measures and strategies to ensure registration of every child at birth.

“While I congratulate Kano State Government on attaining 55% birth registration coverage, I will like to remind all that more than 45% of children still do not have their birth registered; this is a gap that we must work together to close,” he said.

Mr. Farah maintained that UNICEF would not relent in supporting kano government to improve birth registration coverage from 57% to 87% by 2027.

He further said the target of UNICEF is to register one million children in Kano State in 2023 using the digital system.

in his remarks, the Chairman, National Population Commission, Nasir Isa Kwarra, represented by Director Civil Registration, Vital Statistics, Mr Mathew Sunday, said NPC is living no stone unturned in ensuring the registration of every child at birth.

He added that NPC would continue to partner with stakeholders for the enhancement of child birth registration in the country.

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