The National Statistics Office–Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (NSO-ARMM) is set to investigate the proliferation of “fake birth certificates” and other public-related documents in the region.
NSO-ARMM chief Commando Pilimpinas said the upcoming investigation would be spearheaded by the Office of the Civil Registrar General, referring to the administrator of the NSO mandated to carry out and administer the provision of laws on civil registration.
“It is sad to note that a high 76 percent of Filipino-Muslim constituents in the region are not properly registered with the NSO,” Pilimpinas told newsmen here during Wednesday’s Tapatan sa ARMM media forum.
More so, he disclosed that the bulk of fake birth certificates in the region stemmed from job applications of minors wanting to work aboard, particularly in the Middle East.
“Our office is currently focusing on this matter especially that the younger generation in the region is seeking greener pasture aboard to help their families,” Pilimpinas said.
The ARMM, comprising the provinces of Maguindanao, Sulu, Tawi-tawi, Basilan and Sulu is currently categorized as one of the poorest regions in the country.
Apart from natural calamities, the ARMM is saddled by the problem of virtually becoming the hotbed for Moro insurgency in southern Philippines, leading to intermittent clashes between military and separatist Moro Islamic Liberation Front Forces and eventual dislocation of constituents in troubled spots of the region.
Despite this, however, Pilimpinas said population in the region grew tremendously at a rate of 5.46 percent from 2.8 million in 2000 to 4.1 million in 2007.
“That is why, the current Aquino administration is on the right track of looking for means to generate more jobs for the Filipinos growing population of 93 million including those from the ARMM,” he said.