Tigo Tanzania, a brand of Swedish telecom provider Millicom, recently announced that it will expand its partnership with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the government of Tanzania’s Registration, Insolvency and Trusteeship Agency (RITA) to register and provide birth certificates to an estimated 200,000 children under the age of five in the Iringa and Njombe regions. The program, part of a nationwide “under-five” birth registration initiative, involves registering children through 800 mobile devices donated by Tigo for use by 1,500 staff deployed at health care facilities and government offices. The staff will use an app that delivers client information to RITA’s central registration database in “real-time.”
Approximately 400,000 children under five in the Mbeya and Mwanza regions were registered between 2013 and 2016. Program organizers plan to cover an additional 10 regions including Iringa and Njombe with the goal of registering 3.5 million children. As of 2010, 16 percent of children under five in Tanzania were registered with civil authorities, according to a Tanzania Demographic Health Survey.
Maniza Zaman, UNICEF Representative to Tanzania, says that, “Improving birth registration for under five children will…help the government to put in place the basic legislative framework necessary to position its 23 million children under the age of 18 at the top of its development agenda.”
As of 2016, Tigo Tanzania reports 11 million registered subscribers and as of 2015 Millicom reports total assets of USD 12.4 billion and operations in 17 countries. As of 2015, UNICEF operates in 190 countries and reports total revenue of USD 5 billion.
By Michelle Dold, Research Associate
About Tigo Tanzania
Founded in 1994 in Dodoma, Tanzania, as a brand of Sweden-based telecom provider Millicom, Tigo Tanzania provides telecommunication and financial services to approximately 11 million registered subscribers and employs approximately 300,000 Tanzanians as of October 2016. As of 2015, Millicom reports total assets of USD 12.4 billion and operations in 17 countries.
About the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), formerly known as the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, was established in 1946 to provide emergency relief to children affected by World War II. It has since evolved to provide humanitarian support to women and children in developing countries in areas such as healthcare, water and sanitation, education and “protection…from violence.” As of 2015, UNICEF operates in 190 countries and reports total revenue of USD 5 billion.
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