The registration of births and deaths is still low in the country, denying the country accurate information to plan for socio-economic development.
Currently, an average of 23 per cent of deaths and 65 per cent of births are registered annually, against the acceptable standard of 90 per cent for each of them.
In a speech read on his behalf by Ms Dorothy Onny, the Director of Research, Statistics and Information Management at the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, the Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Mr Julius Debrah, attributed that development to the inadequate distribution of registration points across the country.
The occasion was the celebration of Birth and Death Day and launch of the Birth and Death Registration Awareness Week in Accra.
Mr Debrah also mentioned the inability to procure the needed logistics to enhance monitoring and supervision of registration activities as one of the factors contributing to the low registration of births and births.
Register private burial grounds
Mr Debrah warned that the non-registration of death and the indiscriminate interment of human bodies were against the law.
“It is illegal in this country to bury the dead without registration and the acquisition of a burial permit or death certificate,” he said..
The practice, he said, did not only contribute to loss of information on deaths occurring in the country but also had a telling effect on health and issues affecting the environment.
Mr Debrah urged the district assemblies to ensure that all private and public burial grounds were registered and controlled to ensure compliance with the law.
He added that the timely report and registration of births and deaths was a civic responsibility.
Children must be registered
On the requirement for children to be registered, the minister said when children were not registered after birth, they were denied many privileges legitimately due them.
“Unregistered children will be more vulnerable to abuse and exploitation. They are not legally recognised as members of society and often are overlooked in social development,” he said.
He said currently the computerisation of birth and death registration had reduced the processing time for certificates, in addition to providing data for effective planning.
The Registrar of Births and Deaths, Mr John Yao Agbeko, in his remarks, advised members of the public in need of birth an death registration services to personally visit the registration centres, instead of resorting to the services of middlemen.
Source: Daily Graphic
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