Marcos to seek speedy passage of e-governance bill: private sector advisers

Job Manahan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 25 2023 04:39 PM

 President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. delivers his arrival statement to members of his cabinet, various lawmakers, and consultants at the Villamor Airbase on January 5, 2023 after arriving from a state visit to China. Philippine News Agency, ABS-CBN News
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. delivers his arrival statement to members of his cabinet, various lawmakers, and consultants at the Villamor Airbase on January 5, 2023 after arriving from a state visit to China. Philippine News Agency, ABS-CBN News

MANILA — President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. has "committed" to seek the speedy passage of a proposed law on e-governance, the Private Sector Advisory Council (PSAC) said on Wednesday. 

The PSAC, composed of business leaders, said it "provided additional proposals" on the e-governance bill during a Jan. 12 meeting with Marcos.

The President "committed to certifying the proposed E-Governance Act of 2022 as urgent," the council said in a statement. 

The measure is pending in the House of Representatives. Bills certified as urgent are exempt from a rule requiring lawmakers to study the measure for at least 3 days before voting on it. 

 
Marcos last year said the Philippines ranked 89th out of 103 countries in the United Nations’ E-Government Survey. He said it was important for government to digitalize transactions nationwide to improve public services. 

Certifying the e-governance bill as urgent "is a vital step in the right direction towards becoming a digital nation," said PSAC digital infrastructure sector lead and UnionBank Chief Technology and Operations Officer Henry Aguda.
 
"It also provides the impetus to the PSAC Digital Infrastructure Sector’s work plan. We are encouraged by the President’s commitment to shaping a future-ready nation," he added. 

The proposed law seeks interoperability among government resources, assets, and services. It also aims to "transform agency operations by utilizing best practices from public and private sector organizations," its explanatory note read. 

The PSAC's recommendations include making government digital payment systems a 2-way system by introducing digital disbursement services, requiring a Chief Information Office in every government agency, and institutionalizing public-private partnerships on e-government, among others. 

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