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Manila offers whole program, source code of city’s online payment to LGUs for free

/ 09:52 PM May 22, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Local government units struggling to create an online payment scheme may obtain a copy of Manila’s program code and source codes for free, Mayor Isko Moreno announced on Friday.

According to Moreno, his fellow local executives can emulate the city’s online payment system, to avoid direct contact between government employees and taxpayers and limit chances of local coronavirus transmissions.

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Residents of Manila can use the online payment system, which can be accessed through the city’s website www.cityofmanila.ph, to pay taxes like real property tax and for government papers and documents like community tax certificates or cedula.

“Ako po ay nananawagan sa lahat ng mayor sa buong Pilipinas, municipal o city, kung gusto niyo lang, ino-offer namin para sa pangkahalatan na, kung gusto ninyong magkaroon din ng online payment bibigay namin sa inyo ng libre,” Moreno said in his briefing.

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(I am calling on all the mayors in the Philippines, whether from municipalities or cities if you want, we are offering to everybody an online payment system, we can give it to you for free.)

He explained that he has already discussed the matter with the programmers and business people who created the system for them — also for free.

“‘Yong buong program, ‘yong buong source code […] Nakuha ko ng libre, kagabi ‘yong may ari ng kumpanya kinausap ko, sabi ko may mga nag-iinquire sa aking mga mayor paano daw magagawa nila sa kanilang localities.  Eh napapayag ko po kagabi,” Moreno said.

(The whole program, the whole source code, we got it for free.  Last night I talked to the owner of the company who designed it, I told him that other mayors are inquiring how they can create such a program for their localities.  He gave the go signal.)

“Sa 1,600 plus local government units sa Pilipinas.  If you want online payment sa tax, sa real property tax, sa business tax and other services kasi pong ito sa amin pati ‘yong healthcare, occupational health clearance, birth certificate, ma-oonline ‘yan […] libre ko ring ibibigay sa inyo ‘yong halos na-save namin na daan-daang milyon na gastos,” he added.

(For the over 1,000 local government units in the Philippines: if you want online payment for tax, for real property tax, business tax and other services like occupational health clearances and acquisition of birth certificates […] I am willing to share a program that saved us from spending millions in expenses.)

Moreno assured that the system is not only convenient but also secure as money is directly transmitted to the city government’s coffers.

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Both the national and the local government units have been looking for ways to minimize travel and direct contact as the COVID-19 pandemic still rages.

Currently, there are several proposals being tested, like Vice President Leni Robredo’s Community Mart which uses an online app to purchase groceries, which would then be delivered by tricycle drivers — giving them a source of income that went missing through the lockdown periods.

Then on Thursday, the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines announced that they would be conducting online mediation services for intellectual property disputes, borne of the same reasons — to avoid contracting COVID-19.

The education sector is also looking at crafting methods that would allow the continuity of scholastic activities even within the confines of a student’s home — although problems with the inadequacy of gadgets and slow internet speeds still linger.

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TAGS: coronavirus transmissions, direct contact, LGUs, Local Government Units, Manila, Mayor Isko Moreno, Metro, online payment scheme, Philippine news updates, physical distancing, taxpayers
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