Niamey, June 29, 2015, (ECA) From June 16-20, 2015, Dr. Dimitri Sanga, the Director of the Sub-Regional Office for West Africa of the Economic Commission for Africa, led an inter-agency mission to meet with the International Organization of the Francophonie (OIF), the International Association of Francophone Mayors (AIMF) and the Consortium Paris 21 in Paris (16-18 June), France, followed by a site visit to Slovenia (19-20 June). The mission took place in the framework of his mandate to coordinate the Regional Support Group for the Africa Programme on the Accelerated Improvement of Civil Registration and Vital Statistics (APAI-CRVS) for Francophone countries.
The objective of this mission, which included representatives of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and the African Development Bank (AfDB), was to undertake discussions with the main interlocutors mentioned above who are engaged in technical assistance for the improvement of civil registration systems and the establishment of civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) in Africa. The visit to Slovenia aimed at strengthening the capacities of the Regional Group by sharing the experience of this country, cited as a best practice example for CRVS.
In Paris as well as in Ljubljana and Piran, the mission conducted detailed and fruitful discussions with high-level officials, notably the OIF Director of Peace, Democracy and Human Rights, the Asia and Africa Programme Coordinators of Consortium Paris 21, the Advisor for the AIMF, the Secretary-General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Slovenia and the Director of the Chamber of Commerce, and these discussions made it possible to raise the awareness of all these interlocutors on the APAI-CRVS Programme as well as on the need to assure support to African countries in general and to Francophone countries in particular, which should form part of the holistic approach of the APAI-CRVS Programme.
The OIF envisages the following activities: i) strengthening political advocacy for the improvement of civil registration systems in Africa during the course of various OIF events and conferences, ii) the participation of the OIF in activities of the Regional Group, in particular in the next meeting of the Regional Group in Yaoundé in September 2015, iii) actions to strengthen civil registrations to be carried out jointly with initiatives to establish and review electoral lists.
Regarding the AIMF, the following actions will be carried out: i) strengthening political advocacy with the Mayors of Francophone cities so that the improvement of civil registration systems, essential for the formulation, implementation and evaluation of municipal policies, is included among their priority actions, ii) sharing with the Regional Group of the network of experts of the AIMF in terms of the development of computer programmes to manage civil registration systems and implement plans for their improvement.
The activities concerning the Consortium Paris 21 will place an emphasis on: i) synergy of action for the development of guides and tools detailing the links between civil registration, population records and vital statistics in order to ensure better coordination among the actors of civil registration systems, ii) participation in the activities of the Regional Group, in particular in the next meeting in Yaoundé in September 2015.
As for the visit to Slovenia, among other things, it made it possible to i) strengthen the capacities of the members of the Regional Group in terms of best practices in the management of civil registration systems, ii) include a theme on the improvement of civil registration in Africa during the annual statistical days in Slovenia, iii) share Slovenian best practices of new information and communication technologies in the area of the management of civil registration systems with the African countries that are implementing improvement plans.