Full NID review planned

A full review of the PNG National Identity project will be undertaken as part of a clean-up of the PNG Civil and Identity Registry.

National Planning and Monitoring Minister, Richard Maru, revealed this when announcing the appointment of Tumbo Kumung as the acting registrar general of the Civil and Identity Registry.

Maru said a detailed report with findings and recommendations will be presented to Government to chart a way forward in progressing the NID project as well as ridding the registry of malpractice.

In a media conference, Minister Maru declared that a clean-up exercise was to be carried out within the entire PNGCIR and will include a detailed review of the PNGNID project under a specific term of reference.

Maru said since the registrations began, only 146,567 NID cards have been issued, mainly in NCD and Central.

He said a bulk of the K231 million funded project went into building the new NID system and the review will take stock of what they have to fully roll out and register citizens.

“We’ve got a system up and running. We now need to look at how we can use this system to operate better and let’s move onto implementing the system,” he said.

Maru also noted concerns raised over the current process in attaining NID cards from the registry.

He said he failed to understand why citizens were paying for the cards, which were free, and why there were long queues and personnel issues within the registry.

“I will make it my business, even if I have to go down myself to hang around there and make sure we turn around the performance of this organisation,” Maru said.

Acting registrar general, Kumung, said he will begin introducing a new culture into the PNGCIR and expects all staff to follow suit.

“We have to have the right people to roll out the program and that’s my immediate task. And I believe within the next three months, myself and my team will complete the review and present to Government,” he said.

Minister Maru said the Government will provide funding in the 2018 Budget to continue the roll out of the NID project so that all citizens are registered before the 2022 National Elections.

Cedric Patjole