The House of Representatives has urged government at all levels, as well as traditional and religious leaders, to join in sensitising the population on the importance of birth and death registrations.
This was sequel to a unanimous adoption of a motion by Rep. Bashiru Dawodu (APC-Lagos state) at plenary on Tuesday.
Moving the motion, Dawodu said that the National Population Commission (NPC) had only managed to register the birth of 57 per cent of children under five years.
He said that the situation was making it difficult for government to plan adequately for their medical, nutritional and other needs.
“The Federal Government needs to know how many health centres are needed in the country and the population growth across the country to correctly estimate the medications to be imported and the tariffs,” he said.
He expressed concern that a country without credible statistics may not progress as registration of birth is the most basic requirement in planning for children.
“Knowing the age distribution of a country’s population makes it easier to plan, knowing how many are of school age and what year, providing adequate classrooms and school infrastructure.
“Am particularly disturbed that after 60 years of independence, Nigeria still does not have a reliable census figure of its children,” he said.
The house urged the Federal Government to conduct a study on effective penalties for parents, who failed to register the birth of their children.
In his ruling, the Deputy Speaker, Rep. Ahmed Wase, mandated the Committee on Population and Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values to ensure compliance.