Tigo supports under-five mobile birth registration in Tanzania
Africa’s birth registrations have been a challenging undertaking for many years. Tigo, one of Africa’s leading innovative telecommunication companies, is supporting African governments with their under-five birth registration. Working with UNICEF Ghana and the country’s Births and Deaths Registry (BDR), they were recognised at the United Nations (UN) General Assembly 71st annual session for their innovative mHealth app to make children’s birth registration smart, quick and reliable. Tigo’s providing similar support in Tanzania too.
Tigo Tanzania supported the government birth registration initiative with a mobile app that’s accelerating provision of birth certificates for children under five. Tanzania’s Demographic Health Survey (DHS) 2010 found only 16% of children under the five have been registered by civil authorities, with the poorest performers coming from rural areas. An article in BIZTECH Africa says the under-five birth registration initiative in Iringa and Njombe regions expects to benefit more than 200,000 children in both regions
The programme brings registration closer to communities by establishing registration points at health facilities and at community ward executive offices. They’ll enable parents to access over 700 registration points, with more than 1,500 registration assistants equipped with 800 mobile phones donated by Tigo.
Tigo’s been partnering with the Registration, Insolvency and Trusteeship Agency (RITA) and UNICEF in scaling up this project in Njombe and Iringa following success in other regions. Since 2013, more than 400,000 under –fives have been registered and given birth certificates.
Tigo General Manager, Diego Gutierrez says “through innovative mobile technology application, which ensures that birth registration data is uploaded and sent to a central database at RITA in real-time, we have been able to demonstrate our strong commitment to building a societal ecosystem that brings the promise of technology to life in the communities where we operate”.
Better under-five birth registration marks a significant shift in accelerating birth registration in Tanzania. After years of stagnation. “We are transforming the system to make it easier for children and their families to access the entitlement of a birth certificate,” said Emmy Hudson, Acting Chief Executive Officer of RITA.
The initiative covers two regions Mbeya and Mwanza, and will cover ten more, including Iringa and Njombe. The aim’s to facilitate sustainable birth registration for 3.5 million under fives.