By Glazyl Y. Masculino
BACOLOD City – The Department of Social Services and Development (DSSD) has discovered that more than 100 Identification (ID) cards of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) here were fake.
Alma Gustilo, DSSD officer-in-charge, said that this was based on their recent monitoring following the pronouncement of Mayor Alfredo “Albee” Benitez to recall all existing PWD IDs in the city for validation.
Gustilo said that fake PWD IDs were printed on a different kind of paper, the PWD numbers were mixed up, and the encoded type of disabilities were wrong.
Aside from this, the DSSD also received a report that there are persons who do not have disabilities, but allegedly have PWD IDs and booklets to avail of the 20 percent discount.
Gustilo said the production of these fake PWD IDs is being done outside their office, as no DSSD staff is involved in this illegal act. She said they will have to verify the report as to where these are being produced.
Last Monday, Benitez ordered the recalling of the 12,000 existing PWD IDs here, to ensure data security, with the use of a QR code system. The existing PWD IDs will be replaced with PVC cards.
Gustilo said that the said figure has probably not been updated yet, adding that based on their database, only 7,000 PWDs here have been registered.
Gustilo clarified that PWDs can still use their existing PWD IDs and booklets in business establishments, pending the processing of their new PWD ID cards.
She said that she would ask the mayor if they could extend the use of the existing PWD IDs until February 29 while they are working on the validation and the issuance of the new PWD ID cards.
She said the city will release a temporary PWD certificate with validity sans the PWD ID. They can process their new PWD ID card at the Government Express Office at SM City Bacolod and Bacolod Express Service Office at the Ayala Malls Capitol Central, she added.
For the bedridden PWDs, Gustilo said that they will tap the PWD presidents in barangays to augment their staff in conducting home visits and assisting them with the process of getting a new PWD ID card.