Senator Christopher “Bong” Go commended President Rodrigo Duterte for ordering the adoption of digital payments for government disbursements and collections, as he stressed anew the importance of the digitalization of financial transactions in the country
Issued on 12 May, Executive Order (EO) 170 directs all departments, agencies and instrumentalities of the government, including state universities and colleges and government-owned or controlled corporations to adopt digital payments for their respective disbursements and collections. Local government units are also enjoined to do the same.
Go has been pushing for the digitalization of the financial management operations in the government to improve transparency and efficiency in the use of public funds.
“One way to really improve transparency and efficiency in government transactions and utilization of public funds is the use of digital platforms,” the senator said.
He observed the Covid-19 pandemic “underscored the gaps, both foreseen and unforeseen, in the delivery of government services in the country.”
The EO stated, “The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the benefits of utilizing digital payment services across various sectors, as it enabled a fast, convenient, secure and transparent mode of delivering government services and transacting business.”
Under the EO, all agencies are mandated to utilize safe and efficient digital disbursement in the payment of goods, services and other disbursements, including in the distribution of financial assistance, as well as in the payment of salaries, wages, allowances and other compensation to employees.
Agencies are likewise directed to offer a digital mode of collecting payments for taxes, fees, tolls and other charges and impositions.
Go earlier stressed the crucial role the government must play in the digital era transition, leading him to file in 2020 Senate Bill 1738, to be known as the E-Governance Act.
“We need e-governance to provide our people with the services they need from the comfort of their homes or workplaces. Not only shall it enable our bureaucracy to better transition into the ‘new normal’ but it will also cut or minimize red tape and corruption,” he added.