MANILA With a price tag of PHP25 billion, the national ID project should be able to solve the problem of 7.5 million Filipinos without birth certificates, Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto said.
"That should be one of the outcomes of the project. If there will be a mass list-up and registration, then perhaps we can use this activity to end the plight of those without birth certificates," Recto said in a press release issued Tuesday.
"Pwedeng tingnan ito na isa sa mga bonus ng proyekto (We can view this as one of the bonuses of the project)," Recto said.
"What I'm saying is that we should use the national ID platform as an opportunity to solve the quandary of those who do not have birth documents.
"Kung gagastos na rin tayo ng ganito kalaki, baka pwede na hagipin yung problema ng mga kababayan nating walang birth certificate (If we would spend this big an amount, maybe we can look at the problem of our countrymen who have no birth certificates)," he said.
On a related matter, Recto said an individual without or who cannot present a birth certificate can still register for a national ID by presenting "alternative or additional documents to prove his or her identity."
While the law states that the birth certificate is the basic documentary requirement for registration, this clause was inserted in cognizance of the reality that millions of Filipinos have no birth certificates, Recto said.
It emerged during the Senate debates that the measure, which President Rodrigo Duterte signed into law on Aug. 6 as Republic Act No. 11055 or the Philippine Identification System Act, will cost PHP25 billion, spread out over five years.
For 2018, the project has a budget of PHP2 billion, lodged with the lead implementer, the Philippine Statistical Authority (PSA).
It is estimated that 20 million to 25 million Filipinos will register every year for five years, or about 60,000 a day, in data capture centers by at least eight government offices.
These are PSA regional and provincial offices, Local Civil Registry Offices, and the offices of the Government Service Insurance System, Social Security System, Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth), Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-IBIG), Commission on Elections, and Philippine Postal Corp. (PhilPost). (Senate PR)
Source: Philippine News Agency