We are approximately three million Haitians from zero to x year who do not have a birth certificate on the national territory.
A quarter of the population is not registered anywhere and does not officially exist. The director general of the National Archives of Haiti, Wilfrid Bertrand, told LeNouvelliste that this is the result of an outdated, dysfunctional civil status system over a century old …
“The system is completely outdated. Civil registrars are in cities while many of the population live far from downtown. There is also a big mess in the system. Soit’s a contest of causes that makes the system totally dysfunctional, and many more people will not be registered, “said Bertrand on Thursday.
Bertrand said there is also no effort to encourage people to declare their child at birth.
“Many people register when the registrar does not enter the data in the two registers as required by law,” he said, denouncing the fact that there is no body that oversees the work of civil registrars across the country. Haiti’s civil status system has remained the same since the turn of the 20th century, he noted.
Artibonite, Center and Grand’Anse are the three departments in which we find the most Haitians who do not have a birth certificate, said Bertrand in this interview with the newspaper.
The director general of the National Archives told Le Nouvelliste that a program supported by Unicef should help reduce the number of Haitians without a birth certificate in these three departments. But the spread of Covid-19 delays the completion of the program, he regretted. “However, the Haitian state will have to take over,” added Mr. Bertrand. Continue reading.