National ID System to Unify Government-Issued ID cards, Ease Delivery of Social Services

MANILA, Philippines- A national ID system that will replace all-government-issued identification cards, except the driver’s license and passport, will be issued to all 105 million Filipinos within President Rodrigo Duterte’s term.

Aside from unifying all government IDs, the national ID will also function as a social welfare card to ease the delivery of social services, according to a report by ABS-CBN News.

national-id
PHOTO CREDIT: ABS-CBN News

“The national ID will also function [as a] social welfare card. This will identify the qualified beneficiaries, and discounts of transportation, and health care. This will help us plug the leaks in the social welfare program,” Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said on Wednesday, July 5.

The national ID, which will contain the individual’s personal information and biometric data, will be issued at birth and renewable when the citizen turns 18. It will also contain information to determine if an individual can avail of subsidies; discounts on medicine, health care services and transportation;  and tax exemptions under the law and the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Act.

Secured with Europay, Mastercard, Visa (EMV) chips, the ID will possibly load cash subsidies for individuals legally entitled to such benefits.

Once the House enacts a law establishing a national ID system, IDs will be issued initially to senior citizens and persons with disabilities. Members of the 5.2 million poorest household in the country not yet covered by the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) conditional cash transfer program will also be prioritized.

Finance Undersecretary Karl Kendrick Chua said the IDs will be issued within two years of the enactment of the national ID system law.

“The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) will issue the ID cards, with the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) providing oversight functions. The DSWD, meanwhile, will coordinate the various social benefit programs that will be put in place under TRAIN,” Chua said.