Former Speaker and Quezon City Rep. Feliciano Belmonte Jr. has filed a bill establishing an identification system to facilitate transactions with the government and simplify the processes involving public and private services.
Belmonte, in filing House Bill 12, said the Filipino Identification System will provide official identification of all citizens of the Philippines through the issuance of the Filipino ID card, which shall gradually consolidate all existing government-initiated IDs into one integrated and efficient identification system.
Belmonte said the Philippines is one of only nine countries in the world without a national identification system, and the bill seeks to address this deficiency and institutionalize Filipino Identification System to improve government services and limit red tape in government transactions.
“The national identification card will lower costs, streamline transactions, and provide ease and convenience,” Belmonte said.
The measure requires all Filipinos whether residing in the Philippines or abroad to register personal information required by the ID system, and upon application shall be issued a non-transferrable Filipino ID card with an ID number that shall be valid for life.
It provides that the Philippine Statistics Authority shall determine, validate and administer the data and materials required to avail of the benefits of the identification system.
Under the measure, every Filipino residing abroad shall apply for the registration and issuance of the Filipino ID card at the nearest Philippine Embassy or consular office of the country where they are residing.
The Filipino ID card shall be honored in transactions requiring the identity, status, birth and all other personal circumstances, including application for passport, driver’s license; applications for any services and benefits offered by the Government Service Insurance System, the Social Security System, PhilHealth, Home Development Mutual Fund; National Bureau of Investigation.
Likewise the ID can also be good as court, prosecutor and police clearances; schools as well as for employment purposes; voting identification; availment of benefits afforded by law to senior citizens; for banking and financial institution.
It is punishable by law, violations such as false information in applying for the issuance of a Filipino ID card or procures through fraud; utilizing the card in an unlawful manner; any person who refuse to accept, acknowledge or recognize the Filipino ID card as the only official identification of the owner; any public official or employee who connives with the offender, causes the issuance of an unauthorized Filipino ID card, or approves the application despite the knowledge of the existence of fraud or false information.
Belmonte said violators shall be punished with a fine of not less than P50,000 but not more than P500,000 or an imprisonment of not less than six months but not more than two years or both, at the discretion of the court.
Offending government officials and employees shall suffer the penalty of perpetual disqualification from government service, he said.