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By ALICE NACHILEMBE
The Southern African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (SACCORD) has welcomed the second phase mobile issuance of National Registration Cards (NRCs).
SACCORD Executive Director Boniface Cheembe said this process is very important as it is a first step in affording the citizenship of Zambia.
Mr Cheembe said this is also an opportunity to acquire a legal document that forms a basis of them to attain a voter’s card and be in a position to participate as a voter in the 2021 general elections.
He said SACCORD has undertaken some monitoring of the mobile issuance of NRCs and has made two key observations.
Mr Cheembe said firstly the decentralizing of the acquisition of the NRCs through mobile issuance affords many citizens an opportunity to acquire the document and this must be encouraged.
He said secondly, SACCORD would like to appeal to the Minister of Home Affairs, following his directive for a waiver on the fee charged to get a police report for a lost NRC, to ensure that there is effective communication between the Ministry and the Police Command on the waiver fee for those who lost NRCs.
“However, we have observed that the issue of attaining a police report for those who lost the NRC has not been as decentralized as some police posts or stations contend that they do have a mandate to issue such reports. We would like to appeal to the Minister of Home Affairs and the Police Command to consider fully decentralizing the attainment of a police report for those who have lost NRCs so that citizens do not have to spend more money and time moving around to find an appropriate police post or station to issue them such a report.
“The idea of a waiver, which is a good incentive for citizens to go and get an NRC replacement, is a wonderful and welcome initiative and we need to ensure that it is effected so that citizens do not get discouraged on the prospects of paying money to get an NRC replacement,” he said.
Mr Cheembe said the process of mobile issuance of NRCs is going well and we would want to appeal to all citizens who are in need of acquiring an NRC or getting a replacement NRC to take advantage of the decentralized process that has been availed to them.