7 June 2021 – The Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) will join key agencies in crafting uniform guidelines for the online privileges for senior citizens and persons with disabilities (PWDs).
This, after Atty. Victor Dimagiba, president of Laban Konsyumer, Inc., filed a complaint against the Department of Social Welfare (DSWD) for their alleged inaction with earlier commitments to draft guidelines for online discounts for senior citizens and PWDs.
In the inter-agency meeting with ARTA, it was agreed that the DSWD will lead the drafting of a Joint Administrative Order (JAO) on the issue because the concerns of senior citizens and PWDs are under its mandate.
In his complaint to ARTA, Dimagiba said most senior citizens and PWDs have turned to online shopping amid the COVID-19 pandemic so they can safely purchase food, medicine, and other necessities.
However, they are not able to claim their privileges granted by law because most merchants do not know what and how to grant them their discounts.
The DTI made it clear that senior citizens and PWDs should still be able to avail their discounts when buying necessities and prime commodities online.
The DSWD is expected to consolidate comments of concerned agencies on the JAO on or before 15 June 2021 prior to the intended consultation meeting with stakeholders before the end of June.
ARTA to resume surprise inspections at LGUs, NGAs
8 June 2021 – The Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) will resume its surprise inspections at local government units and national government agencies to ensure that all processes are streamlined for the people’s convenience.
Secretary Jeremiah Belgica, director general of ARTA, said they assess the processes of the agencies, offices, and bureaus that they visit and give them recommendations as how to strengthen their streamlining efforts.
The surprise inspections are also a way to catch government workers or officials who commit violations of Republic Act No. 11032 or the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018, he said over an interview with Radyo Pilipinas on Monday.
ARTA recently filed complaints against four Register of Deeds officials who were found to be implementing cut-off schemes and other ease of doing business violations during surprise inspections before the Office of the Ombudsman.
The said inspections will be done as the Authority marks its third anniversary this month.
Belgica said the Authority made rounds at all of the business one-stop shops (BOSS) set up by LGUs in Metro Manila in January 2021.
He reminded LGUs that they only have until 17 June 2021 to automate their transactions by putting up electronic business one-stop shops (eBOSS).
Meanwhile, ARTA also checks on national government agencies and their attached agencies that are now required to issue secondary licenses to integrate with the Central Business Portal as provided by Section 13 of R.A. No. 11032.
Belgica told government offices that to effectively comply with President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s order to simplify and streamline processes, they must coordinate with each other.
“Mahirap mag-deal with the government ‘pag hindi nag-uusap,” he said. “‘Pag hindi natin pinagtagpi-tagpi ang ating mga proseso, we do not see it in the perspective, the POV ng taong bayan.”
“Malaking bagay na ang Pangulo mismo ang nagsabi na pasimplehin ang mga proseso dahil ang streamlining ngayon ay hindi na optional, kung hindi kailangan na talaga siyang gawin,” he added.
STATEMENT OF ARTA SECRETARY JEREMIAH BELGICA ON THE CREATION OF CART IN LGUs
It is pleasing to know that the local government units are complying in the creation of Committee on Anti-Red Tape (CART), including the Davao City led by Mayor Sara Duterte. We welcome and look forward to collaborating with you in the ongoing fight against red tape. I would also like to thank the Mayors for setting an example to other LGUs. As of May 4, a total of 1,870 LGUs has created their CART, and the number is expected to increase. This step is especially beneficial when it comes to expediting government transactions as the committee is responsible for streamlining and reengineering the systems and procedures.
It has always been our dear President Rodrigo Duterte’s appeal to streamline processes for Filipinos and we are grateful that there are LGUs who are already heeding his call.
We earnestly urge other LGUs, national government agencies, and other government instrumentalities to end the long-standing culture of inaction. It is about time to create your own CART and start taking steps in improving the government services through elimination of bureaucratic red tape.