The newly launched birth and death certificates are expected curb forgery through their high level security features.
Launching the new certificates, the Minister of Labour and Home Affairs Peter Siele said, ├¼The new birth and death certificate is of an enhanced quality, with high security properties.” He said the new certificate is a more secure document that should be more difficult to forge.
The new certificate has in it mandatory or primary security features such as rainbow printing, UV prints and anti-copy or scan protection elements. Added to these are first-level security features that are visibly identifiable. Siele said ├¼the certificates will be less susceptible to destruction and damage and should withstand minimal conditions and pressures.” They should therefore have a longer lifespan, significantly reducing chances of replacement on account of disintegration over time.
“The national identification system actually constitutes the base of all other government systems in terms of keeping an up-to-date, secure and accurate personal data,” he said.
Siele added that the new certificates will be used to project and to monitor population growth in the country. He said the government is developing an institutional structure and corresponding legal framework to ensure that registration of births and deaths is effectively and securely conducted.
Siele urged parents and caretakers to seize the opportunity provided by this campaign to register births and deaths and to collect certificates. ├¼Let us properly register our children to avoid incidences whereby our children cannot be properly identified,├« he said.
The new births and deaths certificates are vital for civil registration which aids access to an array of civil and human rights for an individual in the country. He said government is still experiencing challenges with regards to orphaned children who often have to enroll in government social safety programmes but are without birth certificates.
In the same vein, Botswana Police Assistant Commissioner Diphatsa Patiko commended the new certificate saying it is a welcome development. ├¼We have had problems in the past of people forging certificates; as such the new certificates with security features will make our work easier.
The Ministry of Labour and Home affairs in collaboration with UNICEF and three Ministries of Health, Education and Skills Development and Local Government will undertake a birth registration campaign from July to September. The campaign will run under the theme ‘Don’t let your child be a no-body- Register your child birth today’. Siele urged the public to cooperate with Government to deliver these key processes and services effectively.