President orders creation of government ICT network

MANILA (11/24/2003) - President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo last week ordered the creation of a government-wide information network under the Office of the President, aimed at strengthening the bureaucracy and providing crucial information in the fight against poverty.

The President issued Administrative Order No. 86 creating the Office of the President Executive Information Systems (OPEIS). The same AO also directs all government agencies, including local government units (LGUs), to give full assistance and cooperation to the creation of appropriate linkages of their existing electronic databases with the OPEIS.

"The government recognizes the vital role of communications and information in nation-building and has directed the appropriate use of information and communications technology (ICT) as a priority initiative of the bureaucracy in support of the fight against poverty, effective bureaucracy and the strengthening of the Republic," President Arroyo said in a statement.

The OPEIS is intended to facilitate the exchange of information among all government units. Mrs. Arroyo said there is a need for the Office of the President to be ensured of the timely availability of information resources from all government entities because of the critical nature of its work.

The Presidential Management Staff (PMS) will maintain the OPEIS. Under the AO, the PMS can request cooperation and assistance from any government agency when updating the information in the OPEIS.

Once put in place, the OPEIS will allow the government to access vital information from any government agency or LGU, which can be used to bolster its anti-poverty campaign and other projects.

The OPEIS is part of the government's vision to develop an electronic bureaucracy and is also part of its commitment to build on the country's strength in ICT as a growth sector for the future.

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