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ID card system not functioning

Dili Weekly - October 13, 2013

Paulina Quintao – The National Director for Civil Registries in Dili District Vitor da Costa Neto says the system of issuing identity cards to the community has stopped running. He said the system had not been functioning since 2012.

"Our service for the public in regards to identity cards has provisionally closed, as our system isn't functioning properly, so we're waiting for our leaders to negotiate to reopen the identity card service for people," said Neto in Kaikoli.

He said in addition to the RDTL certificate, an identity card was also very important for people as it shows the person comes from Timor-Leste and people need ID when travelling overseas or dealing with any documents.

Neto said since the system was established in 2011 the National Directorate for Registry managed to give 6968 people identity cards.

On the other hand, Comoro resident Alcinda Pinto said the government had an obligation to re-establish a system so the community could deal with their identity cards.

"This card is very important for us as students, as if we would like to continue our studies in another country we need it to identify that we are from Timor-Leste, otherwise people don't believe us," she said. She asked the Ministry of Justice to justify why the system stopped and to resolve it.

Meanwhile Minister of Justice Dionisio Babo recognized the system had stopped, as the system was too technical. He said they were thinking about resolving it soon, so they could serve people and help them access documents like identify cards.