1 million people in need of identity documents

The Registrar General’s Office will relax certain conditions when the nationwide mobile registration exercise starts this April.

This is meant to make it easy for people to access documents amid a backlog of nearly a million people who need identity documents.

An additional two million people are also targeted to receive documentation.

Several groups of people such as women and children (in particular, orphans), persons with disabilities, older persons, Gukurahundi – affected communities, minority groups ( the San, Tonga and Doma, mixed race and intersex communities), refugees at Tongogara Refugee camp, prison inmates, the floods and cyclone Idai affected communities are among those who have no identity documents.

Section 35 (3) of the Constitution states that Zimbabwean Citizens are entitled to rights and benefits that include passports and other travel documents, birth certificates and other identity documents issued by the State.

In an interview with CITE on the sidelines of the official launch of the e-passport enrolment service at the Civil Registry Department in Bulawayo, Acting Registrar General, Henry Machiri, said the mobile registration will take place for six months, from April 1 to September 30, 2022.

“We are anticipating going to the people, urban centres and rural areas to issue birth and death certificates, Identity Documents (IDs) and those basic vital registration documents,” he said.

“We will be advertising to the people and very soon the centres we are going to will be advertised in the press, giving the information to the councils and schools in advance so that people in the area know where they need to go to.”

Machiri also indicated that some requirements would be relaxed to make it easier for people to get documents.

“I cannot tell you now the certain requirements which people need to bring for registration but these are going to be relaxed. As you know the president (Emmerson Mnangagwa) said no one should be left behind, so if we go to a village and there are 200 people who need IDs, we are supposed to leave that village with 200 people having received those IDs,” Machiri said.

“For us to achieve that, we definitely need to relax certain requirements and make it easy for our citizens to get these vital documents.”

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