By Mario B. Casayuran
Senate Minority Leader Franklin M. Drilon yesterday allayed fears that a proposal seeking to establish a national identification system would compromise the citizens’ right to privacy, saying the bill’s main objective is to enhance the delivery of basic services in the country.
Drilon issued the statement during a public hearing of his national ID measure (Senate Bill 15) conducted by Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson, chairman of a Senate Justice and Human Rights sub-committee attended by various government and private agencies.
Lacson said he would conduct another public hearing on Monday to hear oppositors to the bill that he also authored in past Congresses.
He said he would press the Senate to approve the national ID system measure at the first quarter of 2018.
For the record, Drilon said he wanted to debunk the claim that the measure might affect data privacy as the pertinent provisions of the Data Privacy Act would still apply.
Drilon said that the proposed measure should not be viewed as a threat to security as the main objective of the bill is “to ensure efficient delivery of service and ease transactions with government agencies.’’
“There will be proper safeguards so as not to interfere with the individual’s right to privacy. It will also be ensured that unscrupulous persons will not have access to confidential information,” he stressed.
The Philippine Statistics Authority through Undersecretary Lisa Grace Bersales also dispelled fears of a possible breach in privacy, saying that the agency has not had any breach in its data record. The agency also committed to submit its proposed bill at the soonest.