On Friday 5 December in Lilongwe, Malawi's Minister of the Interior and the Community of Sant'Egidio signed the understanding agreement for the implementation of the BRAVO programme! in Malawi during an official ceremony attended by many officials, the members of the National Registration Bureau and the Malawian representatives of the Community of Sant'Egidio.
In Malawi, the registration of births, marriages and deaths was made compulsory by the National Registration Act of 2010, which the government now wants to implement with the support of stakeholders that work for the promotion of fundamental rights and in particular of the rights of children.
It is estimated that only 10% of the population is in possession of the birth certificate; it is therefore an important step forward for Malawi. The newly elected President, Peter Mutarika, made the recording of the civil status a priority, putting it among the programme points of his presidency during the inaugural address.
For years, the Community of Sant'Egidio has entered the birth registration between the actions intended for the protection of thousands of children, who it helps through the DREAM programme, the School of Peace, the long-distance adoptions throughout Malawi, to ensure the legal identity to all and to defend them from human trafficking, child labour, early marriage and all forms of exploitation.
The BRAVO programme! will support the registration of the entire population of Malawi starting from the rural district of Balaka. The program has shown in recent years, in Burkina Faso and Mozambique, its capacity to develop a strategy of rare effectiveness to reach people living in villages. BRAVO! is considered a best practice at the continental level also for having been able to deal successfully with one of the most problematic aspects being faced by the various African states, namely the registration of the population living in rural areas.