Continental civil registration conference
- I haven't seen much discussion of this among genealogists, perhaps because we
are always looking backward while going forward, but it could have profound
implications for future genealogists.
Africa: Experts At CRVs Conference in Critical Talks
Tagged: Africa, Ecotourism, NGO, South Africa, Southern Africa, Sustainable
By Irene Naidoo, 3 September 2012
Durban Experts meeting at the 2nd Civil Registration and Vital Statistics
Conference are currently locked in critical discussions and debates on how to
improve the field on the African continent.
The experts are meeting in Durban until Wednesday and are expected to set the
tone for the ministerial meeting and to a large extent, influence the shape
of its outcomes, said Dimitri Sanga, Director at the African Centre for
Statistics at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.
"It is extremely crucial that in the next three days, experts discuss and
debate all technical issues related to the improvement of civil registration
in Africa... in order to help your ministers provide clear policy guidelines
in the improvement of these systems," he told the delegates at the start of
the conference on Monday.
Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Minister Fatima Chohan was also at the
conference's opening, where she highlighted the critical role civil
registration and vital statistics played in advancing the continents'
Civil registration and the gathering of vital statistics was about
development, success, and prosperity, she stressed.
"Without an accurate database of its citizens, their status and other vital
information, a country can't even begin to call itself a proper democracy...
How do you conduct free and fair elections? It simply cannot account for its
own security and it cannot become prosperous," Chohan added.
Without accurate statistics, governments would end up building sports stadia
where hospitals were required; would build schools that were inaccessible;
and would invest millions on roads that no one would use, she pointed out.
Experts discussing the civil registration and vital statistics had the
opportunity ensure the prevalence of democracy and sound governance in all
African countries and the ability to be able to "pluck from the tree of
prosperity", Chohan added.
In his address to delegates, KwaZulu-Natal Premier Zweli Mkhize said that
civil registration and vital statistics were fundamental to everything
countries and governments planned and carried out.
"For planning, we require accurate data and vital statistics, and for the
execution of government programmes and service delivery. In the absence of
accurate data, vital statistics and civil registration, it makes it difficult
to quantify," he added.
Accurate data was also important in order to ensure that the resources of a
country were equitably distributed across its population.
The experts are meeting at the Durban International Convention Centre ahead
of the Ministerial Conference on 6 and 7 September.
Their meeting is expected to provide a comprehensive analytical framework and
a roadmap that will culminate in recommendations for the ministers to
deliberate upon and ratify.
The conference, held under the theme 'Improving Civil Registration and Vital
Statistics Institutional and Human Infrastructure in Africa', is coordinated
by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the African
Union Commission (AUC), African Development Bank, and hosted by the South
The Ministerial Conference will be chaired by Home Affairs Minister and
Chairperson of the AU Commission Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.
Fifty-four African Ministers responsible for civil registration and vital
statistics are expected to attend the conference, as well as about 500
delegates from African countries including senior civil registration
technical experts, development partners, young statisticians and professional
The South African government delegation will be led by Dlamini Zuma and
include representatives of the Ministries of Home Affairs, International
Relations and Co-operation, Health, Social Development, SAPS, Defence and
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