Eight Aeta natives became the first beneficiaries of the Philippine Statistics Authority’s Philsys Birth Registration Assistance Project (PBRAP) launched in Zambales.
According to Chief Statistical Specialist Norman Bundalian of PSA Zambales, indigenous people from Barangay Maculcol, Botolan were the first to be assisted by the agency’s free Negative Certification or Free Verification for Central Luzon.
It is said that it is a big deal for a beneficiary to have a birth certificate through the aforementioned project because such a document is very important especially for students and job seekers.
It was learned from Botolan Municipal Civil Registrar Clevelyn Deliquina that because of the money to be used by someone who needs a birth certificate, some are forced not to get one.
“It’s sad the stories of people who just because they don’t have or have a wrong birth certificate, they lose opportunities in life”, Deliquina said.
Botolan Mayor Jun Omar Ebdane supported the program that provided financial assistance for PBRAP. At the beginning of the project, he gave an initial P98,500 for the negative registration of his constituents who are residents of the remote area of Barangay Maculcol.
Currently there are 2,403 free registration slots for Botolan residents, according to Deliquiña.
On Ebdane’s side, he said that the local government already has an allocation of more than P1-million for the placement of the PSA office in Botolan. In total, the PSA’s target is to register 16,000 residents of the province and priority is given to indigenous people and those belonging to the marginalized sector.