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Chief demands involvement of locals in civil registration process

June 8, 2016 By Memunatu Bangura

Paramount Chief Thomas J.K. Koroma of Sittia Chiefdom in the Bonthe district has called on the authorities to recruit people from within their respective communities in order to achieve a successful, corrupt-free and fair civil registration process.

He was speaking during a sensitisation outreach meeting by the National Registration Secretariat on the upcoming civil registration process.

Chief Koroma noted that local residents of communities know their terrain better than strangers, recalling that during the last population and housing census many people and houses were not counted because enumerators deployed in the district were complete strangers.

He emphasised that indigenes of Bonthe district should be involved during the registration process

On his part, the Chief Registrar of National Registration Secretariat said it was necessary for Sierra Leoneans to partake in the national civil registration process, which he said upholds human rights and establishes the legal identity of individuals and relationship with the state.

Foday Kamara was speaking to stakeholders and residents of Bonthe district during a sensitisation symposium on the National Civil Registration Bill, 2016.

Presenting the preparedness and plans of the secretariat at the District Council hall, Kamara said they would soon embark on civil registration process that would support various national agencies, including National Electoral Commission (NEC), Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Statistic Sierra Leone, Immigration Department, law enforcement agencies and other financial institutions, to aid them become more affective in their operations.

He further explained that civil registration was a system through which a government records the occurrence and characteristic of vital events related to citizens and residents in a continuous, permanent, compulsory and universal manner and in accordance with an established legal framework.

Kamara told the people of Bonthe district that civil registration would establish legal documentations, adding that complete coverage, accuracy and timeliness of the process were essential for quality and vital statistics.

District Election Officer, Victor Musa, said the National Electoral Commission was working in collaboration with the National Registration Secretariat, adding that after the civil registration process the final register would also be used for election purposes.

Musa further stated that NEC would provide technical support during the registration process and that the NRS would also make use of previous pooling centres to register people countrywide.

He said NEC would soon provide information about delimitation of boundaries as new constituencies would be announced.

Musa said the commission was also involved in recruiting over 6,000 Sierra Leoneans to serve as verifying officers, data entry officers and field offers to work in their respective communities during the registration process.

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