Difficult compliance

Difficult compliance

WITH President Rodrigo Duterte’s order to cut down processing of business transactions to three days, some Davao City government offices are still struggling to fully comply due to various factors.

Duterte, in his fourth State of the Nation Address (Sona) speech on Monday, July 22, said the country is losing potential businessmen because of slow government transactions.

“I am directing you publicly. All clearances, permits emanating from your office that would also need your approval, must be out, at the very least in three days,” Duterte said.

Duterte called out Social Security System (SSS), Pag-Ibig Fund (Home Development Mutual Fund), Land Registration Authority (LRA), Land Transportation Office (LTO), and Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to “drastically improve their service”.

The President signed in 2018 the Ease of Doing Business Act that aims to simplify transactions of business entities with government within three days, seven days for more substantial transactions, and 20 days for highly technical transactions.

Duterte highlighted in his speech that transactions in Davao City are done after an hour, unless an ocular inspection is required. Office of the City Building Office (Ocbo) head Cirinia Grace Catubig said her office had been compliant with Duterte’s mandate even when he was still city mayor.

Catubig said Ocbo caters an average of 20 to 35 applicants per day.

“Mas paspas gani nang diria sa atoa. Compared sa laing lugar nga ang building permit processing application kay maabta’g 15 days. Shock gani ko nga ana kadugay (We have a faster transaction here, in terms of processing building permit application, as compared to other areas wherein it will take them 15 days. I was shocked to learn that),” she said, adding her office conducts benchmarking to other local government units.

Although she admitted they had to work on weekends, especially for processing pending applications, due to the lack of manpower. She added that all application requirements are already posted online to avoid inconveniences.

City Tourism Operations Office (CTOO) head Generose Tecson said although the city is able to quickly approve some transactions, she said the city is still adjusting its system to improve its services.

“May things lang kaming inaayos because hindi minsan nagdya-jive ‘yung records namin with the number of approved permits sa Business Bureau Office (BBO), and number ng kumukuha ng tourism licenses (We are still addressing the system since the records do not jive, particularly with the number of approved permits by the Business Bureau, and the number of tourism licenses applications),” Tecson said.

CTOO, this year, ordered the BBO to bar establishments who failed to get tourism license from the office.

City Engineer’s Office (CEO) supervising office Cecelia D. Tano also admitted that process flow of documents would take up to 15 days before actions will be made. Although she said it is a case-to-case basis.

Tano said CEO cannot fully comply with the three-day processing order due to the requisite for an onsite inspection, particularly road construction and repairs, construction of school buildings, and other infrastructure requests.

Although she said the office immediately take action on request especially during calamities.

She also said special city holidays such as Kadayawan and special city events could also slowdown their transactions because office staff are usually deployed to other areas to help in these events. (With reports from Jenielle Danica Gencianos, Addu intern, and Lyka Amethyst H. Casamayor)


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