DICT backs push for e-governance

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    The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) is supporting the proposed bill to institutionalize e-governance in the country to cope with the transition to the new normal and the challenges posed by the COVID-19 threat.

    DICT said once enacted, Senate Bill 1738 or the “E-Governance Act of 2020” filed by Sen. Bong Go last July 27 shall complement and enhance its current efforts to transform public service delivery through prioritization of digitalization initiatives, in line with President Duterte’s call to “make physical queueing a thing of the past” during his 5th State of the Nation Address.

    “We are ramping up our digitalization plans to accelerate solid client-responsive reforms, and the filing of Senator Go of the Bill is a welcome development towards an apparent shared vision between the Executive and the Legislative when it comes to national digital transformation,” Gregorio Honasan II, DICT secretary, said yesterday. “Digital transformation should be done with interoperation as a long-term goal and with client experience always as a top consideration,” he added.

    The proposed legislation aims to establish an integrated and interoperable information system for the whole of government, an internal records management system, an information database, and digital portals for government services.

    The bill also aims to do away with paper-based and outdated models of bureaucratic work within government agencies and units to improve efficiency.

    The proposed measure envisions the establishment of the Integrated Government Network to serve as the primary mode of information and resource sharing in government. It shall serve as the government’s focal information management tool and communications network.

    Meanwhile, DICT said it is currently focusing on interconnecting government agencies and integrating their services towards a long-term target of seamless interoperation.

    It is improving government interconnectivity with the Philippine government network (GovNet), which provides government offices with high speed broadband connection linked to a secure data center, allowing the processing and transfer of sizeable data for more efficient public services.

    DICT said it is also gearing for e-government interoperability for 2021 through a portfolio of inter-sectoral initiatives it is currently developing, in line with the recommendations of the “We Recover as One” Report of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases’ Technical Working Group for Anticipatory and Forward Planning.

    With these enhanced initiatives in place, the DICT added it is committed to lead efforts towards government digital transformation in support of the President’s directives and parallel to the legislative push for digitalization of services.

    “We are extending all efforts to transform how we deliver public services, how we transact with the people, and how we move forward in the new normal by maximizing the benefits of information and communications technology,” Honasan said.