ANYONE who’s ever been bothered by outdated or irrelevant government websites has found an ally in the Cebu Provincial Board (PB).
The PB approved last week a resolution, drafted by Member Sun Shimura, asking the Department of Transportation and Communication, the National Computer Center and the National Information Technology Council to take action on “ineffective or inefficient” government websites.
Doing so will promote accountability and transparency, Shimura said.
In a phone interview, Shimura said he has experienced dealing with inaccurate or outdated data in a government site. He cited an incident last May, when the Commission on Elections site, at one point, listed election results in Tabogon town that were inconsistent with the real-time results.
“If information is inaccurate or not updated on these sites, this can cause confusion,” the first-term PB member and former Daanbantayan town mayor said.
In his resolution, Shimura referred to “an increasing number of dissatisfied transacting public” that not only were some sites inaccessible, outdated or under construction, but that their email inquiries went unanswered.
This runs counter to the mandate of the E-Commerce Law and the state policy of transparency and accountability.
Alexa Marie Campilan, a 21-year-old Occupational Therapy student, shared her experience in searching for updates on government news and a current list of barangay officials.
She browsed a city government’s site, but found no names nor profiles of barangay officials.
For a Filipino citizen to be well-informed on the progress and problems of the city, the website should be comprehensive enough to present more information, she said.
In the resolution, Shimura said government agencies, by updating and improving their websites, will drive home the point that “this era of the Internet, when work can be done from practically anywhere on the globe in real time, epitomizes the technological leap in communication systems fueling the emerging global information society.”
Republic Act 8792 or the E-Commerce Law binds the government to “promote the universal use of electronic transactions in the government and by the general public.”