FOLLOWING the order of Mayor Benjamin Magalong to make registration in the Baguio in my Pocket (BIMP) application a requirement for entry to the city hall, the City Council of Baguio has in a resolution urged for the reversal of the order, and instead to make registration in the BIMP an optional rather than a mandatory matter.
Councilor Arthur Allad-iw, main author of the resolution, pointed out that the requirement of BIMP registry is disadvantageous to people, especially those who cannot afford to have gadgets that can run the application and let them register.
He also added that unfamiliarity with technology and long queues for registration and assistance with the application have caused individuals to experience delays or outright non-completion of transactions with city hall.
Meanwhile, according to a letter to the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) chairperson, the requirement of BIMP registry must be looked into as a potential violation of human rights, especially as it is currently required both for access to city hall, and on its being slated to be used as a database for vaccine distribution, essentially pushing unregistered residents to the low priority vaccination queues.
At the same time, the data requirements for the application are also potential violations of the right to privacy due to the breadth of required information for registering in the application.
The city council earlier in January also passed a resolution urging the local government and the BIMP application provider to review the required information for registering in the application.
The city has been pushing the BIMP app since July of last year when the city signed a memorandum of agreement with Pasig-based Information Technology Business Solutions (ITBS) Corporation, the app’s provider.
BIMP is a collection of applications aimed at promoting an e-government ecosystem to include cashless payment transactions, citizen data management, contact tracing, among other services.