PH Senator Pushes For a Full Digitization of Gov’t Services in 2022

A solon from the Philippines, Senator Sherwin Gatchalian is pushing for a bill aiming to run full and integrated E-Government (eGov) services to the Filipino constituents by the end of 2022.

They are tagged under Senate Bill No. 1793 or the ‘Full Digital Transformation Act of 2020,’ Gatchalians is calling all government agencies, government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs), instrumentalities, and local government units (LGUs) to adopt a digitization strategy that aligns with the Philippine Digital Transformation Strategy (PDTS) 2022.

PDTS is an issued guideline that picks up from previous efforts to establish an electronic government in the Philippines using development and innovations in information and communications technology. The leveraging principle behind this is the end goal of “people integration and empowerment through ICT.”

Meanwhile, there would be streamlined procedures with this proposed measure by shifting and maximizing government services’ automation and digitization. Thus, creating a zero-contact policy and to enable its efficient delivery.

The premise above as well would be following Republic Act No. 11032 or the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018, Republic Act No. 11234, or the Energy Virtual One-Stop Shop Act, and other applicable laws.

Moreover, the bill seeks to blend common data related to persons, transportation, business, and land.

There would also be expected government investments about mandates the developing organizational capability and staff competencies that will back national digital transformation.

Among many of its conditions is the creation of a Digital Transformation Department (DTD) in every government office.

Furthermore, while the government entity already has an existing Information & Communications Technology (ICT) Department, it will be transformed into a DTD.

Albeit new, the DTD will continue to perform the functions of the ICT Department that will aggressively expand its operations to support and roll out the office’s digital transformation strategy.

Among its mandate is the onboarding and training of government personnel in using e-Gov services.

To aid the public monitor the status of their needs at any given time, the DTD will provide a system that cultivates the system of coordination among various departments to ensure that workflows, responsibilities, and accountabilities are correctly tracked.

Gatchalian also made us of the existing platform, the e-Gov Master Plan and related e-Gov and Integrated Government Philippines (iGovPhil) programs introduced by its Sci-Tech Bureau, the Department of Science and Technology’s (DOST’s) Information and Communications Technology Office.

The politician admitted that despite having established system, there has been very sluggish in integrating the use of digital technology to lift modernization and improve the delivery of services through these means.

With the Covid-19 pandemic hitting us all over, he realized that it also helped us and accelerated the need for digital transformation in the government, outlining the roles and that efforts such as contact tracing and the distribution of aid could have been smoother if data are coherent and digital systems are in place.

“We must not prolong the lack of modenization in order to provide better for the constituents we are in or at least to the public. One solution to a problem hit by COVID19 is the modern system that will be immediate answer to everyone”, he said.

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