Senator asks BSP to remind banks to accept national ID for transactions

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 27) – Senator Sherwin Gatchalian on Saturday called on the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to remind banks to accept the national ID as sufficient proof of identity as provided under the Philippine Identification System Act.

The senator made the call following complaints that some banks disallow the use of the national ID in transactions because there is no owner’s signature on the card.

"This is not the intention of the law. The national ID system is meant to simplify public and private transactions. The BSP should immediately look into this issue and ensure that all financial institutions, especially Landbank and Development Bank of the Philippines, adhere to the law," Gatchalian said in a statement.

Under the law, banks that will refuse to recognize the national ID as a valid proof of identity must be fined ₱500,000, he added.

Moreover, BSP's Memorandum No. M-2021-057 stated that the “the non-inclusion of signatures was deliberate and aligns with other national ID systems such as India, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, among others.”

Gatchalian also noted that the memo allows both offline and online authentication of the ID owner's identity.

Banks normally require two or more IDs, among other documentary requirements, to open a bank account. Those with only one valid ID, who usually come from the low-income sector, are rejected.

"There shouldn't be a need for another valid ID if the individual concerned only has the national ID," Gatchalian said.

He also encouraged the public to report to the BSP banks that refuse to accept the validity of national IDs in their transactions.

Over 50 million national IDs have been issued as of March this year, the Philippine Statistics Authority said. Up to 7,000 national IDs set for delivery in the City of Manila were burned during the Manila Central Post Office fire.