The National Orientation Agency (NOA) in collaboration with the National Population Commission (NPC) says it is targeting to register 40,000 under five years ]children in Niger.
Alhaji Yahaya Gbongbo, State Director of NOA in Niger, disclosed this at a community reorientation and grassroots dialogue on increased birth registration in six Local Government Areas of the state in Minna on Thursday.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the exercise is being supported by the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF).
He said that 60 communities would be engaged during the exercise in Gbako, Bosso, Gurara, Edati, Mashegu and Mariga local government areas.
“Registration of birth has suffered setback either because the people are ignorant of the benefits or lack of information on how to access it,” he said.
Gbongbo said the exercise would commence on Feb. 23 at various designated centres in each of the local government areas.
Also speaking, Malam Uthman Baba, a Director with NPC, said the campaign would create awareness on the importance of birth certificate.
He urged parents to take advantage of the opportunity to get their wards registered.
In her remarks, Dr Amina Bello, wife of the Niger state governor, commended the state government and UNICEF for the support to NOA to carry out the exercise.
Bello, who was represented by Hajiya Kaltum Rufai, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women Affairs, solicited the support of the media to create awareness on the importance of the exercise.
Mr Wilfred Mamah, Child Protection Specialist, UNICEF Kaduna Field Office, said that UNICEF was concerned about children birth registration as it was a certificate of life and account for them.
In his remarks, Alhaji Hussein Lemu, Chairman of Gbako local government, gave assurance to support and contribute towards the success of the exercise in the area.