Establishment of rules for the use of electronic media outlets in government procedures

Given the current scenario in our country, it is necessary to reinforce our system to encourage the use of electronic means in government procedures, whereby the National Government has enacted Law No.144 on 15th April, 2020 that modifies and includes articles of our Law No.83 of 2012.

 This mandatory regulation will be applied gradually and progressively in accordance with the schedule of the National Authority for Government Innovation (AIG). To this end, the AIG will collaborate with the different public entities, to gradually establish a standardized document management system. for the public sector.

This will place special emphasis on public notaries to implement the regulation and establish a modernize alternative for the digital environment.

The official portal “PanamaDigital” is established as the electronic administrative headquarters, which will be administered by the National Authority for Government Innovation in coordination with the other authorities.

The online procedures will have the same validity and legal recognition as those carried out in person and users will be able to carry out online procedures through the single portal for citizens, in addition to their consultation and monitoring, including electronic payment. In regards to Public entities, they must enable different channels or means to provide the service.

It is important to mention that according to Law No. 144 of 2020, once the electronic or digital means for carrying out government procedures online are enabled, no legal provision or regulation will take effect, requiring that the procedure be carried out in person or through printed documents.

The rules for the protection of personal data are taken into consideration and limits the access of public servants to the sensitive information of users. Any violation of this provision will be taken as a violation of privacy subject to administrative, criminal and civil measures.

In addition, for the organizational structures of the AIG, the National Directorate of Government Innovation Projects and the Innovation and Technological Transformation Directorate, will facilitate entities in the modernization project digital government, will be responsible for the formulation and implementation of innovation projects. Through this law, the AIG is empowered to impose fines of up to thirtu (30%) of its monthly gross salary on the public servant responsible for having committed offenses or offenses related to this Law. It will be a challenge for entities to adapt their laws, decree and regulations for the application of services contemplated in this law, but it will bring a transformation in positive public service.