19/05/2020 â€` News24
`The department had an estimated backlog of 81 650 [registrations]
at the beginning of Level 4 lockdown,` its acting director-
general, Jackie MacKay, told the committee.
`Of the aforementioned backlog, the department registered 46 541
births which represent 57% of the above, estimated backlog.`
MacKay said this meant the department was left with 35 109 births
to be registered from the backlog, but during that period, 8 989
births for newly born babies were registered at health facilities.
`To date, the department has registered a total number of 55 530
births within a period of seven working days.
`The department is likely to clear the estimated backlog on birth
registrations within five days, should the situation remain
The department started registering births again from 1 May. During
the first phase of the lockdown, it only offered death
registrations, temporary identity certificates and the re-issue of
MacKay said the demand for the re-issuance of birth certificates
and temporary identity certificates remained high.
People were, however, less enthusiastic to pick up their smart ID
cards. Of the reported 412 686 uncollected cards only 29 475, or
7%, were collected.
`The department will intensify its communication strategy to
encourage clients to collect identity documents that are currently
in front offices,` he added.
The committee was generally impressed that the department had
managed to make substantial inroads into the backlog.
MacKay said there was a growing demand for the department`s
services and a need to identify areas to be relaxed during further
stages of the lockdown.
The department proposes to allow the registration of marriages
during Level 3. This will take place per appointment.
It also proposes opening applications for the late registration of
births. This is an extension of birth registration.
Adjudication of applications will be per appointment as per the
birth and death registration regulations.
Last Wednesday, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the country
would drop to Level 3 of the nationwide lockdown by the end of
May, but some parts of the country with higher Covid-19 infection
rates would remain at Level 4.
On Friday, the Presidency said the country could move to Level 3
before the end of the month.
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