Underage NRC holders probed

Government is investigating reports that underage children in Southern Province were issued with National Registration Cards, Home Affairs Minister Davies Mwila informed Parliament last week before it adjourned.

Mr Mwila told the House that following the information gathered by his office, investigations had been instituted in the matter.

He was responding to follow-up questions from the opposition MPs soon after he issued a ministerial statement on the NRC registration exercise update.

But UPND Kalomo Central Member of Parliament Request Muntanga questioned the credibility of Mr Mwila’s investigations, wondering why Government was targeting Southern Province leaving out Luapula Province.

The Kalomo lawmaker also alleged that he had the same information about teenagers in Luapula Province obtaining NRCs.

Mr Muntanga accused Mr Mwila of being biased by limiting investigations to Southern Province only.

“What has Southern Province done to you? Why should you only institute investigations in Southern Province? Why not in Luapula where you come from?” Mr Muntanga asked.

Meanwhile, UPND youth affairs coordinator Kenny Ng’ona has suggested that the registration and issuance of national registration cards (NRCs) should be done in schools where ages can be easily ascertained to prevent malpractices.

Mr Ng’ona observed that most citizens captured in the issuance of NRCs were allegedly juveniles and cadres.

“I can confirm that the high numbers for those that now have NRCs and registered as voters are only reflecting in PF strongholds. In places like the North-Western Province where the Government has less support the process of obtaining NRCs and voters cards was closed long before the deadline and the workers were paid for doing nothing,” he said.