PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Monday, July 26, 2021, said government services have improved in the last five years but additional legislative measures are needed to further improve services.
He called on Congress to pass a law on the use of information and communication technology (ICT) to further improve government services in light of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
"As such, I ask Congress to pass an e-governance act that will set a transition of government processes to digital age," he said during his final State of the Nation Address (Sona).
He said he has also ordered the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) to streamline the process for the application of the National ID or the Philippine identification system.
On Saturday, Duterte urged local government units to expedite the vaccination process after seeing a report about citizens having to wait for hours under the rain just to get inoculated.
Duterte also noted the clearing of the backlog of 3.6 million licenses for printing which the administration inherited from the previous leadership. It was cleared through implementing a license validity extension to 10 years which was recently announced by the Land Transportation Office.
He, however ,said license holders should undergo medical assessment every five years to check their eyesight and hearing, in particular.
Duterte said through the road projects and modifications implemented under his leadership through the comprehensive tax reform program, the traffic situation in the country, particularly in Metro Manila, has improved and has “taken away the misery of the commuting public.”
“Thanks to our partnership with the private sector, we are able to open Stage 3 of the Metro Manila Skyway in January this year. This decongested Edsa and other major roads in Metro Manila,” he added.
Amid the pandemic, the Department of Transportation launched the Edsa Busway which gives priority to commuters in terms of using the road.
The Edsa Busway has 16 stops from Monumento to the Parañaque Unified Terminal Exchange.
The DOTr said the usual travel time of two to three hours in the said route because of traffic was reduced to just 45 minutes to one hour.
Duterte said the railway services have also improved.
"Today, we can see the tangible results. MRT3...was a horror for the daily commuters to endure in the past," he said.
"The waiting time between trains has been significantly reduced.... We have taken away the misery of public commuting," he added.
Duterte said the government is also pursuing high-impact projects outside Metro Manila. (SunStar Philippines)