Telenor and UNICEF to Pilot Birth Registration through Mobile Technology
ISLAMABAD 27 March 2014: In an effort to innovate access to birth registration in Pakistan, Telenor Pakistan and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) have joined hands in pioneering the use of mobile technology to ensure a fundamental right of children. Today, the Chief Corporate Affairs Officer Telenor Pakistan, Muhammad Aslam Hayat and UNICEF Representative in Pakistan, Dan Rohrmann signed an agreement that not only reflects the global partnership between Telenor and UNICEF but also realizes a critical area of child rights in Pakistan. This is particularly important as the year 2014 is the 25th anniversary of the Conventions of the Rights of the Child.
The collaboration will be spearheaded in selected Union Councils of Sindh and Punjab with a view to increase the demand for birth registration by facilitating access of parents and administrative officials to registration through improved processes, data management and planning.
Speaking on the occasion, Muhammad Aslam Hayat said, “We at Telenor Pakistan aim to empower societies by extending the benefits of telecommunications through innovative measures to the masses. Considering proof of identity an essential prerequisite for gaining access to basic services, and to exercising fundamental human rights, we are pleased to announce our partnership with UNICEF Pakistan, which will not only help boost birth registration rate per se, but will also establish the importance of technology for enabling and mediating civil rights in Pakistan.”
As the use of rapidly growing mobile technology in Pakistan has opened up avenues that offer unprecedented potential for services, this innovative pilot aims at creating an enabling environment by making the process user-friendly, and building knowledge and motivation among communities and stakeholders for birth registration.
“This project has tremendous implications for the right of every child in Pakistan as birth registration is an important instrument to realize children’s right to health, education and other services in particular protection against violence, abuse and exploitation, said Dan Rohrmann, UNICEF Representative in Pakistan. “International experience shows that innovation as well as usage of new technologies significantly facilitate access to basic social services and birth registration is the key to this effect. We hope this breakthrough in partnership and innovation between the Local Governments, Telenor and UNICEF will help achieve the ultimate goal of permanent, continuous and universal birth registration in Pakistan.”
Provincial Local Government Departments, District Administrations, provincial and district offices of NADRA and other concerned government departments will contribute in implementation and success of this initiative