Tanzania Introduces Mobile Birth Registration System

Tanzania mobile operator Tigo has launched a new birth registration system in partnership with Registration Insolvency & Trusteeship Agency (RITA) and UNICEF using an innovative mobile application.

The mobile application has simplified the process of birth registration by entering the registration information into a mobile phone which sends the data to a central database at RITA in real time.

The application is designed to work on all models of mobile phones and operating systems.

The project will accelerate the process of child birth registration which will further help in getting access to healthcare, higher education and later employment to more and more children.

Tigo has set a target to register 900,000 children under the age of 5 in the period of 2 years keeping in mind that the birth rate of Tanzania by 2014 was 36.82 births/1,000 population.

The project has started in Mbeya in its first phase and will be followed by Mwanza, Geita, Shinyanga, and Simiyu regions.

The Acting Chief Executive Officer of RITA, Ms. Emmy Hudson, said at the app launch that “this simplified system marks a significant shift in accelerating birth registration in Tanzania after years of stagnation”.

According to Tanzania Demographic Health Survey (DHS) conducted in 2010, only 16% of children under the age of five have been registered with civil authorities, of whom only 6% had received birth certificates.