Philippine biometric ID registration on good footing as authorities eye Step 2 start

More than 8M citizens enrolled so far
Philippine biometric ID registration on good footing as authorities eye Step 2 start

Authorities in the Republic of the Philippines say the ongoing registration process for biometric ID cards in the country is well on course with well over 8 million citizens already enrolled, and plans are afoot for the start of phase two in early January, according to reports by Filipino media.

On December 12, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) announced that Step 2 of the registration process for what is known as the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) would start on January 4 across the nation, and this phase will be dedicated to validating supporting documents and capturing biometric data of citizens at various registration points, the Philippine News Agency (PNA) reports.

The news agency cited the announcement signed by the PSA Undersecretary Dennis Mapa as indicating that the process will unfold “…on a gradual, small scale basis…”

Mapa was further quoted as praising citizens for the impressive turnout during the Step 1, saying the PSA, has on the basis of this, extended its projected total number of registrants from 9 to 11 million before the close of this year.

He said all necessary contacts had been made with partner local government units regarding the Step 2 registration schedule, which will be done conscious of the existing health and safety measures regarding the coronavirus pandemic.

“We will continue our Step 1 registration activities until it is safe for our registrants to proceed with Step 2 registration. The PSA wants to ensure that we deliver a safe, secure and seamless PhilSys registration experience to the Filipino people. We encourage all Filipinos to participate once again once we open the registration activities to the public,” PNA quoted Mapa as assuring.

The PSA Undersecretary also urged Filipinos to channel any concerns or queries through the PhilSys official Facebook page or call a toll-free number created for that purpose.

Meanwhile, Philstar Global pegged its report on the millstone in the registration process which has seen the enrollment of 8.4 million citizens as of December 9.

Step 1 of the registration process, the report added, principally targeted heads of low-income households in 32 priority provinces, and it was about collecting demographic information and preparing appointments ahead of the Step 2.

The Philippine Identification System was a project activated in 2018 intended to establish a valid proof of identity for all Filipinos, and for foreigners living in the country. The country seeks to register 105 million citizens for the project by mid-2022, and the cards will however not replace existing national ID documents, Philstar Global noted.

It also reported that data being collected within the framework of the registration process includes details about age, gender, date and place of birth, address, mobile number, email address, marital status, blood type and residency status in the country. This, the report states, will be accompanied by biometric information like iris and fingerprint scans.

The ID cards will be used to access a variety of government and public services.

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