GOOD PRACTICE: Promoting civil registration in Niger
From a legal point of view, the concept of informality corresponds to the non-registration of an economic activity carried out by a person to the official registers. In many developing countries, especially those with dominant rural areas, this is also the case of many people, who are not registered because of the lack of an efficient civil status registration.
Absence of registration is at the base of most of the issues and difficulties that people depending on informal economy are facing. In fact, the rule of law, including rights, freedoms and obligations, can apply if and only if citizens have a legal existence. Consequently, people depending on informal economy stand outside of the legal framework and their access to all the benefits foreseen by both legal and welfare systems is precluded.
Within the EC-funded project “Support program for capacity building of the civil status system” implemented by UNICEF in Niger, the approach consisted in consolidating the supply of civil registration in rural and isolated areas to support the progressive implementation of a reliable system of civil registration.
Considering the main critical issues at the base of the low level of registration in rural areas, the adopted approach consisted in the set-up of a network of registration centres in rural areas under the form of hot-spots and the organization of a service of delivery of registration acts directly to isolated villages thanks to the support of volunteers. Moreover, the strategy included the training and incentivising of local and central administrations to search and convince populations to register births, marriages, and deaths, in order to secure the key protection rights.
More detailed information on this good practice is available at the page 49 of the volume 4.3 “Good Practices and Lessons Learned – Case studies of 15 EC-funded projects”