People without vital records
At the registry office in Tambacounda, where I work, we are faced with people who do not have birth records because they have not been not registered.
Amongst them one can find school students. As well as that, some couples do not register their marriages at city hall.
There are children whose education was interrupted during their time in school, children not accounted for in social programmes, in universal medical coverage, in family welfare grants. Couples without a marriage certificate cannot have their marriage officially acknowledged and the children that the couple have will not be able to access the benefits of the marriage. Orphans are often faced with the problem of inheritance, etc.
For people older than one year, they will not be able to get registered at the registry office but instead will be able to establish a ruling of non-registration of birth which they will be able to submit at the district court.
For its judgements, circuit courts must be organised by the president of the District Court in order to facilitate obtaining a birth certificate. Awareness caravans must also go into areas in the presence of the elected representative in order to draw the population’s attention towards getting registered within the required time-frames.
Another solution is to set up secondary registry offices in healthcare facilities. Medical treatment has its own problems with administrative forms which are still a major challenge in Senegal.
This English translation has been possible thanks to the PerMondo project: Free translation of website and documents for non-profit organisations. A project managed by Mondo Agit. Translator: John Tinneny; Proofreader: Daisy Shrimpton.