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Côte d’Ivoire runs seven-day campaign to distribute over 50k biometric ID cards

Côte d’Ivoire runs seven-day campaign to distribute over 50k biometric ID cards

The ID card issuing authority in Côte d’Ivoire – the National Civil Status Registration and Identification Office (ONECI) – has for the past week been running a campaign intended to distribute 50,000 biometric national ID cards to their owners.

The special exercise which authorities call a ‘proximity campaign’ started on 1 March and rounds off on 7 March, according to a note from ONECI.

The body explains that the campaign intends to enable thousands of Ivorians whose ID cards have already been produced but not yet collected, to do so. It said the exercise will also allow applicants who have specific complaints about their ID card to submit them for appropriate action.

The distribution point for the IDs during this campaign has been the Jesse Jackson sports complex in Yopougon – a large, generally deprived suburb in the commercial capital Abidjan. It concerns applicants whose ID cards had been produced and were stockpiled at the Yopougon town hall, indicates ONECI.

Before the start of the exercise, ONECI said it would send SMS alerts to all those concerned.

The mass distribution of ID Cards in Yopougon comes days after the Minister of Interior and Security, Vagondo Diomandé, announced at a workshop organised by ONECI that more than 5.5 million new biometric national ID cards had been produced, and that 400,000 of them were yet to be collected by their owners, as of 24 February.

The seminar, which brought together representatives from the 32 government ministries, the prime minister’s office and the government information and communication center, was meant to examine the stakes and challenges of the country’s civil status registration and identification reform project, as reports the privately-owned Linfodrome.

“Today, we have reached a good rate of issuance of national identity cards. We have reached more than 5.5 million identity cards produced. More than 400,000 national identity cards are still waiting for their owners in ONECI’s centers. ONECI will not be able to keep these cards indefinitely,” said the minister as quoted by the outlet.

Meanwhile, as part of ONECI’s effort to enhance the ID card issuance process, it recently launched a mobile application ‘MyONECI’ which allows applicants to verify the status of their ID card, writes Connection Ivoirienne.

With the application, which can be downloaded from Google Play or Apple’s App Store, citizens can apply for misplaced ID cards or National Identification Numbers without having to attend a center in person.

ONECI says it has developed software which will be deployed for a pilot phase within the framework of the digitization of the country’s civil status registration system.

According to a news brief from the agency, 230,000 birth certificates will be digitized as part of the pilot in the Grand-Bassam council area, east along the coast from Abidjan, before nationwide deployment.

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