Relief for parents as birth registration is launched at hospitals

Marie Claire Mutuyimana is a mother of four who lives in Masaka Sector, Kicukiro District.

After giving birth to her fourth child on Monday, August 10, 2020 she became the first parent to register her child through the new integrated civil registration system.


Under the new system, when a mother gives birth at a health facility, a designated civil registrar at that facility records details of the child and issues a National Identification Number (NIN) of a child to the mother.


Afterwards, the mother can go to an Irembo agent with the NIN and print out the birth certificate.


This will also be the way through which death certificates will be processed.

Previously, all civil registration procedures including death and birth registration had to take place at the sector level 15 days after giving birth, something that Mutuyimana said was cumbersome. 

“Getting the birth certificate for my three other children was not easy because my husband would be busy at work and I was supposed to be at the sector office 15 days after giving birth, which was not easy for me because I live far and therefore had to take a motorbike while I had not yet fully recovered,” she said.

Quick and efficient service delivery

While launching the new system at Masaka Hospital on Monday, the Minister of Local Government, Anastase Shyaka, noted that the new development will ensure better service delivery.

“This is another milestone in embracing technology as a country, and we believe citizens will now receive better service at the shortest cost in terms of time and distance travelled, with no need of making long queues at the sector office,” he told the press.

Under the new system, mothers who will give birth from their home will reach out to their respective cell executive secretary to register their babies, which is also a new development.

However, according to Shyaka, all mothers are encouraged to give birth from health facilities.

Accurate national planning

According to Josephine Mukesha, the Director General of the National Identification Agency (NIDA), the new system will be accessed by different institutions, which will help the government to plan based on accurate statistics.

“The new system comes with interoperable capabilities to link CRVS (civil registration and vital statistics), the population registry, and the Health Information Management System, among other databases to ensure all institutions with stake in civic information receive the same data and plan accordingly without having to do multiple entries,” she said.

According to NIDA, the new CRVS system will begin with the registration and certification of the events of birth and death, learning from which will inform approaches for adding other events into the system.

Rwanda recognises nine vital events: birth, death, marriage, and divorce, annulment of marriage, guardianship, adoption, recognition, and legitimation. 

The registration of these events allows citizens to get benefits including services they are entitled to, said Mukesha.

While the birth registration rate in Rwanda is currently at 63 per cent, higher than the sub-Saharan Africa average of 44 per cent, it remains lower than the global target of 90 per cent by 2025.

Also, the country’s death registration is at 30 per cent.

According to an adopted CRVS strategy for 2017-2022, Rwanda seeks to increase birth and death registration and certification to 95 percent and 90 percent respectively against global targets of increasing them to 90 and 70 percent by 2025.

The Ministry of Local Government reiterated that the new system will help achieve this target.

Subscribe to The New Times E-Paper

For news tips and story ideas please WhatsApp +250 788 310 999    


Follow The New Times on Google News