The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) conducted the Briefing on Updates on Civil Registration Policies and Issuances last 06 November 2020 using videoconferencing. The virtual event was attended by key PSA officials and participated by various officials and staff of the consular services of accredited embassies in the Philippines. Countries who participated include Australia, Canada, Italy, Korea, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States of America. The forum aimed to 1) update the foreign embassies on civil registration policies and issuances, and 2) respond to common civil registration concerns.
The briefing started at 9:00 AM and was moderated by PSA Regional Director Paciano Dizon of the Regional Statistical Service Office – National Regional Office. The Welcome Remarks was delivered by Mr. Benjamin Arsenio Navarro, Director of the International Cooperation Unit (ICU) of the PSA, which included the acknowledgment of the participants in attendance. Assistant Secretary Neil Frank Ferrer of the Office of Consular Affairs of the Department of Foreign Affairs gave the Opening Remarks highlighting the significance of civil registration in the function of foreign service posts and the importance of working together in this critical time.
The event also featured a video message by Undersecretary Dennis S. Mapa, Ph.D., National Statistician and Civil Registrar General, underscoring the commitment of PSA to deliver efficient civil registration services even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country. Usec. Mapa stated that a person’s legal identity is a means to access public services. He also recognized that the right information could make a big difference and an effective civil registration system is crucial across the globe.
The virtual forum featured two main lectures. The first presentation focused on important updates on civil registration policies for the year which was presented by Officer-In-Charge, Assistant National Statistician Fred S.Sollesta of the Civil Registration Service (CRS). This was followed by Atty. Henedine Palabras, Officer-In-Charge of the Legal Service, responding to the submitted queries of the participants. During the open forum, questions mainly focused on issues of timeline for issuances of certificates and changes in the process given the current situation, Muslim marriages and marriages between a Filipino citizen and a foreigner, various issues related to birth certificates, and local civil registrar details. The panel of speakers was joined by Ms. Marizza Grande and Ms. Thelma Kahanding, both officials from the CRS.
The briefing was formally concluded by Atty. Maqtahar Manulon, Officer-In-Charge, Deputy National Statistician of the Civil Registration and Central Support Office of the PSA. He emphasized that though civil registration is a dynamic and possibly never-ending process, what is important is that the channels for communication are open and issues are resolved in an acceptable manner for all parties.
For more information on Civil Registration of PSA, visit https://psa.gov.ph/civil-registration-page.
-Civil Registration Services, Civil Registration and Central Support Office