OTML is partnering with the Office of PNG Civil & Identity Registry to register citizens from the mine areas, Tabubil Township, Fly River corridor and the surrounding communities.
In its efforts to support registrations, the company is also funding the establishment of a fixed PNG National Identification (NID) office in Ok Tedi with all office equipment, logistics and allowance payment of NID officers engaged in the registration.
The PNG National Identification (NID) Project is one of the important projects of the O’Neill/ Abel Government to register all citizens of PNG by 2021 and use the statistics for development planning, efficient resource allocation and improved service delivery based on the demographic information.
National Identification is critical for identification, authentication and repudiation of individual identities. With high population growth, increased mobility of people within districts and province; foreign travels, commerce and trade; and increased civil activities of births, marriages, adoption, migration and deaths require a strong national identification system to administer all these vital events.
The Government is establishing Civil & Identity Registration infrastructures around the country including Mobile Registration rollout programs to make registration free, easy and accessible for all citizens.
This requires a collaborative and partnership approach for all stakeholders towards NID registration efforts and establishing an administrative process to get data flowing from the ward levels to the Provincial and National offices. All Government agencies, corporate entities, churches, community organisations and individuals must now work together to get all their members, families and themselves registered and properly administer records of these important events.
OTML’s support to this project will not only support the Government’s NID registration efforts but also improve its own efforts towards identifying landowners and beneficiaries of the mine to better understand the environment and people in which it operates and impacts.
Landowner identification and clan vetting in most project development areas in PNG are becoming an increasing challenge and the efforts to properly identify and authenticate members of local communities is critical for successful development of the projects and sharing of benefits to the rightful landowners and communities.
“The step that OTML is taking will become a model for other mining companies and project developers in the country to follow suit. I encourage all corporate entities to step up and engage with PNGCIR to get their employees and local landowners registered for NID,” Minister Maru said.
“Whilst we embark on getting our citizens registered for NID, the Government is also working on the review of the PNG Civil Registration Act of 1963 and amended Act 2014 to give prominence to Civil Registration in the country and make National Identification mandatory for every citizens and visitors who will be in the country for longer period to be issued with NID cards. The legislation will break the institutional silos and open doors for all Government agencies to marry their systems for effective communication for better identification of clients and efficient public service delivery.
It is time we all work together to protect our identity, know our stakeholders and place ourselves better to serve our people and help make our country a better place to live and work in."