Probe on PhilSys Act sought by Senators

Challenges in the distribution of the social amelioration program could have been avoided if the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) Act was implemented, according to several senators.

After President Rodrigo Duterte noted that problems with the delivery of emergency subsidies could have been reduced with the National ID System, Senate President Vicente Sotto III and Senator Panfilo Lacson urged that the said program should be implemented immediately.

In Senate Resolution No. 352, Sen. Sotto and Sen, Lacson said that the National ID System would help not only in the distribution of the social amelioration program but also assist law enforcement agencies in the monitoring, prevention, and reduction of crime.

Sen. Ramon Revilla, Jr., also filed Senate Resolution No. 355 and echoed the statement that challenges would have been curbed with a National ID system in place. The Department of Social Welfare and Development, as well as local government units, have reported that they are exerting all efforts to comply with the deadline of the national government to distribute the funds from the social amelioration program.

Signed into law on August 6, 2018, Republic Act No. 11055 or the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) Act aims to establish a single national identification system for all citizens and resident aliens of the Philippines.

The program which has a budget of P25-B, is led by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) and is established to enhance the delivery of government services, promote further transparency, and to reduce corruption and red tape. The National ID program also advances the goal to ease doing business in the country.

A pilot registration was done at the House of Representatives last November to December 2019 while the mass rollout and registration of the program has been moved to sometime in July to October 2020 due to complications brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic according to the PSA.

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