The Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) has announced that N5.3 billion will be invested in the development of an Electronic Civil Registration and Vital Statistics System (eCRVS) in Nigeria to improve birth and death registration.
The announcement regarding the project’s approval by the Federal Government was made in a statement issued by Mr. Ifeanyi Nwoko, the Acting Head of Media and Publicity of the Commission, on behalf of the ICRC.
The project will effectively digitize and maintain electronic records of birth and death registrations in the country. It will be funded by Messrs Barnksforte Technologies, in partnership with the National Population Commission,
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Digital birth and death Registry
The eCRVS project aims to digitally capture and verify births and deaths in Nigeria, offering attestation and verification of certificates to end-users through an online platform.
During a three-day capacity building training on births and deaths digital registration held in Bauchi in 2020, Dr. Bertram Chukwubuike, the Director of Information Technology at the National Population Commission (NPC), emphasized the importance of digital registration for improving data collection accuracy and supporting sustainable national development.
“Vital Registration in Nigeria given the output from the National Population Commission needs to be strengthened and coordinated at various tiers of government.
Dr. Chukwubuike highlighted the need to strengthen and coordinate vital registration in Nigeria across various levels of government. He emphasized that governments worldwide, committed to good governance, rely on citizens’ demographic databases containing reliable vital statistics such as births, deaths, and marriages. Such data is essential for efficient service delivery and effective planning towards sustainable development.
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Previous method and associated problems
Previously, birth and death registrations were carried out manually in Nigeria. This manual process often led to several issues, including:
- Low coverage: Manual registration processes were prone to errors, omissions, and delays, resulting in incomplete or inaccurate records. This led to low coverage of birth and death registrations, hindering the availability of reliable data for policy-making and planning purposes.
- Inadequate data: Manual data collection and storage methods made it difficult to aggregate and analyze birth and death statistics. This lack of comprehensive and accurate data posed challenges for government agencies and organizations involved in vital statistics analysis, health planning, and resource allocation.
- Inefficiency and delays: Manual processing of birth and death registrations was time-consuming and inefficient. It often involved multiple manual entries, paperwork, and physical storage, leading to delays in issuing certificates and causing inconvenience for individuals requiring official documentation.
How the digital birth and death would solve the challenges
The introduction of the eCRVS system offers several advantages over the previous manual method, including:
- Enhanced accuracy and data Integrity: The digital system will significantly reduce human errors and ensure the accuracy and integrity of birth and death records. Automated data entry and validation mechanisms will minimize mistakes during registration, leading to improved data quality.
- Increased coverage and accessibility: By transitioning to an electronic platform, the eCRVS project aims to increase the coverage of birth and death registrations. This will ensure a more comprehensive and reliable database, facilitating better planning and decision-making in areas such as healthcare, education, and social welfare.
- Efficient record management: The electronic system will streamline the registration and record-keeping processes. It will allow for centralized storage and easy retrieval of birth and death records, eliminating the need for physical paperwork and reducing administrative burdens. This efficiency will enable faster issuance of certificates and improve service delivery to individuals in need of official documentation.
- Data analysis and reporting: The digital birth and death registry will enable more efficient analysis and reporting of vital statistics. The availability of accurate and up-to-date data will aid policymakers, researchers, and public health professionals in understanding demographic trends, developing targeted interventions, and implementing evidence-based policies.
The introduction of the Electronic Civil Registration and Vital Statistics System (eCRVS) in Nigeria marks a significant step toward digitizing birth and death records.
By addressing the limitations of the previous manual method, the eCRVS project will enhance accuracy, increased coverage, efficient record management, and improved data analysis, this digitization effort will provide reliable and accessible records.
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