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The government ensures that the PhilSys project would be inclusive.

MANILA, Philippines — The government reaffirmed on Thursday that the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) initiative, which gives confirmation of identity to all Filipinos, will be inclusive.

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) announced in an advisory that it has signed a memorandum of understanding with the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) to provide easy registration access for indigenous tribal members who want to get their own free Philippine Identification (PhilID) cards.

Within IP communities, mobile PhilSys registration sites will be opened as part of the agreement.

According to the PSA, government officials will help IPs throughout the registration process to ensure that no one is left behind in the PhilSys project’s implementation.

PSA Undersecretary Dennis Mapa, who is also the National Statistician and Civil Registrar General, stated the major goal of the PhilSys project is to create a long-term and inclusive identification system for all Filipinos, particularly the most vulnerable.

“We are grateful to NCIP for their support of PhilSys and dedication to elevating indigenous communities around the country,” he said.

The PSA first launched a mobile PhilSys registration program in Porac, Pampanga, on May 18 of last year, supporting Aeta communities in the villages of Camisa, Villa Maria, Inararo, Diaz, and Sapang Uwak.

PSA, in keeping with its goal of inclusivity, assisted with the registration of 254 additional Aetas in Floridablanca, Pampanga on March 19.

Also continuing is a PhilSys registration for IPs in Occidental Mindoro.

To date, PhilSys has successfully registered 10,972 IPs belonging to the Ratagnon, Hanunuo, Gubatnon, Tao Buid, and Iraya tribes.

PSA Assistant Secretary Rosalinda Bautista informed the public that “as it proceeds to register the last mile of the population,” the PhilSys Registry Office will make comparable efforts.

“We are optimistic that by partnering with NCIP, we will be able to register more indigenous people and increase their access to financial, social welfare, security, health, education, and other government services,” she said.

More Filipinos of all races are encouraged to register for the PhilSys Step 1 procedure at register.philsys.gov.ph, with Step 2 gathering biometric information such as fingerprints, iris, and front-facing pictures at various registration centers across the country.

The Philippine Postal Corporation will deliver physical PhilID cards to owners in step three (PHLPost).

While registrants wait for their actual cards, the PSA will shortly offer a PhilSys mobile application to provide an alternate form of “proof of identification” for transactions.

President Rodrigo Duterte signed Republic Act 11055, or the PhilSys Act, into law in August 2018, with the goal of creating a single national ID for all Filipinos and resident immigrants.

The national ID will serve as valid evidence of identity that will make public and private transactions, school enrollment, and bank account opening easier.

It will also increase efficiency, particularly when interacting with government services since people will simply have to display their PhilID during transactions.

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