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E-Governance bill hurdles House committee 


A BILL seeking to digitalize the bureaucracy has been approved by the House committee on information and communications technology.

On Wednesday the committee passed an unnumbered substitute bill seeking to effect a government transition to an electronic mode of delivering services and information.

Rabindranath P. Quilala, director of the Anti-Red Tape Authority, said that the measure will facilitate the ease of doing business in the Philippines.

“We have already streamlined (our processes), but the problem is, the system is still slow. We still follow the person-to-person and paper-to-paper systems,” he told the panel.

Ma. Salvacion M. Axalan, a project development officer with the Budget department, said that the measure will harmonize rules governing public financial management. “Ten years ago, we had a PEFA (Public Expenditure and Financial Accountability) assessment wherein the Philippines failed (in) financial management,” she said.

The measure defines e-governance as the application of information and communications technology to government, business, and the public service, with a view to making processes more efficient.

The Department of Information and Communications Technology is tasked with coming up with an E-Government Master Plan which will serve as the blueprint for the development and enhancement of all electronic government services and processes.

The E-Governance bill is one of the House’s priority measures for the year. Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez said last month that bill “will help accelerate our digital transformation to fuel growth momentum.”

President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. has said that he plans to certify as urgent the E-Governance bill. — Beatriz Marie D. Cruz

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