By Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz, August 27, 2021; Manila Bulletin

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said that 26.3 million Filipinos nationwide have completed the second of a three-step registration for the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) as of Aug. 18.

Step 2 registration involves the biometric information capture and demographic information verification of the applicants.

During the implementation of enhanced community quarantine, PSA had suspended the operations of registration centers in Metro Manila and six provinces, which limited opportunities for Filipinos to register.

However, PSA said it was still able to record an increase in registrations from the remaining registration centers in operation.

“The PSA estimated around 2.9 million registrations missed due to these closures, but we remain steadfast in our commitment to prioritize the health and safety of our registrants. We closely monitor registration operations in other areas with lower-level community quarantine rules to ensure that health and safety protocols are strictly observed,” PSA Undersecretary Dennis S. Mapa said in a statement on Thursday, Aug. 26.

Registrants from areas under heightened community quarantine restrictions who booked their Step 2 appointment schedule from Aug. 21 to 31, 2021 were advised to rebook at later dates.

PSA said that the reopening of registration centers will depend on the quarantine restrictions implemented by the national government.

Registration centers in cities and municipalities with lower-level quarantine restrictions will continue to operate in compliance with the protocols from the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases and guidance from their respective local government units.

PSA assured the strict adherence of the public to the standard health and safety protocols in each registration center.

It asked registrants to comply with their scheduled appointment to limit the number of individuals at registration centers and maintain physical distancing.

Registrants were also asked to observe proper wearing of face masks and face shields, as well as regular disinfection.

The issuance of the PhilSys Number or PSN and delivery of the Philippine ID is the third and final step of PhilSys registration.