Public Management

More than 500 million Africans have no legal identity-World Bank

Tuesday, 02 October 2018 05:01

(Ecofin Agency) - About half of the 1 billion world citizens without an official identity live in Africa, Kristalina Georgieva, World Bank’s CEO, indicated last week during a meeting organized in the framework of the United Nations general assembly.

Indeed, according to figures published by World Bank, Sub-Saharan African citizens represent the great majority (494 million) of people without an official proof of identity. This thus implies that in Sub-Saharan African countries, about one out of every two citizens do not have an identity card.

In addition, the ID4D (Identification for development) - Findex 2017 indicates that out of the 99 countries surveyed, ten African countries show low ID coverage rate and in seven out of those ten countries there is a large gap between women and men's ID coverage rate.  

Moreover, the UNICEF indicates that more than 2/3 of African children under-five hold no birth certificate. According to experts, this exacerbates the lack of access to health, education and financing services for most of the African population. It also creates important difficulties in the valorization of their political and judicial rights (voting rights notably).

To tend to this problem, World Bank announced that $6 billion is needed to implement projects such as the ID4D, aimed at running large digital identification and civil registration campaigns. This should help improve financial inclusion, governance, regional integration and promotion of public investments in the human capital via educational and civil protection programs.

We must work together to create inclusive and trusted digital IDb systems that can unlock economic opportunities for the world most vulnerable people”, Kristalina Georgieva indicated.

Let’s note that about $1 billion is currently being raised to promote digital identification in 30 countries, 23 of which are African.

Moutiou Adjibi Nourou

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