Right to privacy remains an issue in the passage of the National ID System

UNTV News   •   December 5, 2017   •   3965

The Senate has begun to tackle the proposed implementation of a National Identification System in the country.

This is after the Lower House of Congress passed its own version of the said bill last September.

According to Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian, privacy concerns being put forward by the bill’s critics should no longer be an issue.

“Opening an account on Facebook, opening an account on Twitter, we are giving our own personal information. Yung tumututol po na invasion of privacy,Jurassic Park pa ang kanilang isipan,” Gatchalian said.

(Opening an account on Facebook, opening an account on Twitter, we are giving our own personal information. Those who oppose it, saying it would result in an invasion of privacy, are still stuck in Jurassic Park mentality.)

Through the said system, all government issued IDs will be unified into a single one, which would help make transactions faster.

Senator Panfilo Lacson believes it would also help suppress crime.

“Maraming gamit sa crime detection and prevention, sa terrorism. Tapos pag-transact ng business with private institutions like sa bank loans. Di ba tayo pag nag-open ng account hihingan tayo ng 2 IDs? So ngayon, kanina it was discussed, baka pwede ito gawing substitute sa passport natin pauwi,” Lacson said.

(It has many uses in terms of crime detection and prevention, In terms of terrorism. When transacting business with private institutions like bank loans. When we open accounts, don’t they ask for 2 IDs? So, we discussed earlier if we can also use it as a substitute for passports when going home.)

The Senators also debated on how to begin the registration to have a National ID.

And, whether to use the current database of the GSIS and SSS or to create a new registration process for all Filipinos 18 years old and above.

“In our wrap up meeting, there’s a suggestion to start biometrics from zero,” Philippine Statistics Authority, National Statistician & Civil Registrar General Dr. Lisa Grace Bersales said.

“Start from zero, I don’t know how much funding will require,” Sen. Franklin Drilon said.

The Senate targets to pass the proposed National ID System in the first quarter of 2018.

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), meanwhile, said they have already started preparations although the bill has yet to become a law.

This is especially since, the PSA notes, there is a P2-billion budget allotted already for the National ID System in its 2018 budget.

“Ang GAA kung ma-sign na yung aming P8-billion ng PSA, nasa GAA na siya. Pwede na namin siyang gamitin to prepare for national ID,” Bersales said.

(In the GAA, if the P8-billion proposed budget of PSA will be approved, it’s already in the GAA. We can already use it to prepare for National ID.)

Senate will continue its deliberation on the proposal next week. The Senators are expected to hear more from the side of other stakeholders regarding right to privacy issues. – Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue

BSP assures execs facing graft raps before Ombudsman will answer in proper forum

Robie de Guzman   •   January 21, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) on Thursday assured that its officials who are facing graft complaint before the Office of the Ombudsman will respond in an appropriate forum.

The complaint, filed by Ricardo Fulgencio IV of Stop Corruption Organization of the Philippines, accused BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno and officials of central bank’s Bids and Awards Committee (BAC) of granting P1.75-billion contract to Allcard International sans public bidding for the implementation of the national identification system.

Aside from Diokno, Prudence Angelita Kasala, Rogel Joseph del Rosario, Carl Cesar Bibat, Marianne Santos, Salvador del Mundo, and Giovanni Israel Joson were also named as respondents to the complaint.

“As regards the complaint filed with the Ombudsman relative to the procurement for the printing of cards for the National ID System, rest assured that the BSP officials concerned will respond in the proper forum once required in accordance with applicable rules,” the BSP said in a statement.

Fulgencio said the bidding process for equipment and materials for the Philippine Identification cards was flawed because the BAC of the BSP Security Plant Complex, which is in charge of procuring materials for the cards, required all bidders to procure raw materials, such as diffractive optically variable image device (DOVID) and polycarbonate sheets, from OVD Kinegram.

The complainant said this requirement is prohibited by procurement laws as it shows a specific reference to a brand name.

“[The] respondents’ act of requiring the bidders to procure their raw materials from OVD Kinegram AG effectively gave the latter private party, unwarranted benefits. The respondents’ preference to Kinegram deprived other DOVID suppliers of the opportunity to bid for the project and robbed the government of getting the most advantageous terms for the supply of such raw materials,” the complaint read.

“Clearly, this is a corrupt practice. Henceforth, it is respectfully prayed before this Honorable Office that after the requisite preliminary investigation, criminal information against the herein respondents be filed before the Sandiganbayan,” it added.

Despite the complaint, the BSP said that it supports the rollout of the National ID as it is key to wider financial inclusion that promotes shared economic growth and the financial wellbeing of Filipinos.

PSA warns against fake National ID processing services online

Marje Pelayo   •   December 29, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) warns the public against groups or individuals offering to assist in the processing of PhilSys ID or the national ID with corresponding fees.

The PSA has received reports that a certain Facebook  group named ‘Philippine National ID (News & Information),’ and an individual using the name ‘Calvin Processings’ are offering such services online.

According to PSA, the PhilSys registration for the national ID is free and any posts or offers that are asking for payments for processing are fake.

The agency reminds that PhilSys registration has three steps set by the government:

Step 1 – Registration, or the collection of demographic data and setting the appointment

Step 2 – Capturing the fingerprints and iris scans of the registrants

Step 3 – Issuance of PhilSys Numbers (PSNs) and physical IDs

The agency noted that Step 1 has already commenced and PSA registration officers are going house-to-house to collect demographic information of a select sample of low-income household heads from 32 priority provinces.

Registration for PhilSys will be officially open to the public in 2021.

The Agency also warned the public that the unauthorized issuance and use of the PhilSys ID is punishable by law, with 6 years imprisonment and a fine of P1-3 million according to the Implementing Rules and Regulation (IRR) of  R.A. No. 11055 or Philippine Identification System Act.

Any illegal activities concerning the PhilSys ID system can be reported through the PhilSys Facebook page or through hotline numbers 1388.

National ID step 2 registration to resume Jan. 4

Marje Pelayo   •   December 14, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) announced that the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) Step 2 Registration will resume on January 4, 2021.

Step 2 Registration is the validation of supporting documents and capturing of biometric information at registration centers.

Step 1 Registration was conducted from Oct. 12 to Nov. 25 nationwide.

The PSA claimed significant progress after recording more than 8.4 million Filipinos completing Step 1 Registration.

In a statement, National Statistician and Civil Registrar General and Undersecretary Dennis Mapa said the PSA will also release an official advisory on hired and trained enumerators for Step 2 Registration.

The official added that they will continue Step 1 Registration activities until it is safe for registrants to proceed with Step 2 Registration.

“The PSA wants to ensure that we deliver a safe, secure, and seamless PhilSys registration experience to the Filipino people. We encourage all Filipinos to participate once we open the registration activities to the public,” he said.

For inquiries and questions, the PSA encourages the public to send message through email at info@philsys.gov.ph or to the agency’s official Facebook page.

The agency may also be reached through its hotline number 1388 or via text at 0915-941-5680.

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