Mobiha Acknowledges  Marape Government  for NID’s Significant Achievements 

Monday 11 March 2024

Prime Minister, James Marape (centre), Minister for Administrative Services, Richard Masere, (fourth from left) Chief Secretary to Government, Ivan Pomaleu, NID Director General, Mr  Noel Mobiha (right),  Electoral Commissioner, Mr  Simon Sinai (third right) and NID Officials.

The National Identity (NID) Office has made remarkable strides in registering 3.3 million Papua New Guineans, a majority of whom were registered since Prime Minister Hon. James Marape took office in 2019.

The NID Director-General Noel Mobiha, in a recent meeting, lauded the government’s effectiveness by stating, “under your regime we have done better”, attributing the success to the accumulated experience over time.

Mr. Mobiha reported that 77 per cent, or approximately 2.3 million of the total registrations, occurred under the Marape Government, marking a significant increase in the project’s momentum since its inception in 2015.

Minister for Administrative Services Hon. Richard Masere detailed the financial contributions towards the project, noting a total expenditure of K461 million, with K115.8 million allocated during Prime Minister Marape’s term.

 “This investment has resulted in 77 per cent of total registrations, showcasing a stark improvement in efficiency and output compared to the K345.5 million spent previously, which accounted for only 23 per cent or 770,493 registrations,” he said.

“Out of the 3.3 million registered individuals, 1.2 million have received their NID cards, including duplicates. The project has also issued 2.4 million birth certificates and recorded a similar number of registrations for children.”

Minister Masere highlighted the challenges of scaling up registrations, pointing to the need for more kits and manpower.

He recommended provincial government support in procuring kits and funding staff salaries to expedite the registration process. Despite these hurdles, the dedication of the NID office’s workforce, primarily composed of recent university graduates working as casuals, remains high, even amidst delays in salary payments.

“Financial constraints have further impacted the NID project, with a K10 million cut from its nominal K20 million budget this year, alongside efforts to settle a K5 million outstanding debt to the Internal Revenue Commission (IRC),” he said.

“However, the project has received support from various sources, including a private firm, Santos, planning to purchase K1 million worth of registration kits, and UNICEF, which has bought 44 kits awaiting arrival.

“The Gulf Provincial Government has also contributed by purchasing 20 kits.”

Minister Masere emphasised the critical importance of the NID database as a comprehensive national register, tracing individuals’ life events from birth to death, underscoring its significance beyond mere data collection.

Prime Minister Marape expressed his gratitude towards Director General Mobiha and the NID staff for their commendable work and issued an apology for the recent budget cuts, reaffirming the government’s commitment to the success of the National Identity project.

Leave a Comment