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News : Duterte Calls for Establishment of Hotline for Complaints
Manila, Philippines, July 1, 2016 -- President Rodrigo Dutere called for the establishment of a call centre that will register complaints from ordinary citizens, so that they can be categorised and sent to his office for proper response.
"It [the call centre] will be manned by 10 operators covering the entire country. The number is 8888," said Duterte during his first cabinet meeting, which ended late on Thursday, the transcript of which was released to the media on Friday. "They can report to me any complaint and there will be a manager that will redirect their complaint to the proper office," Duterte said.
The national hotline will be open 24 hours a day, said Duterte.
The complaints will be recorded and kept in an archive, said another source.
Saying he heard about this plan earlier, when supporters hosted a thanksgiving party for Duterte in Cebu City, central Philippines, in late June, columnist Bobit Avila said, "President-elect Duterte warned small government bureaucrats who might be forced or intimidated by their superiors to commit acts of corruption — that if they report these matters directly to him and he finds these allegations to be true — those who report to him will be given the post of their superiors who will be demoted."
"I’m sure that this will have positive results in the fight against corruption within the government," said Avila, adding, "This is something novel and never done by any [other] president."
The establishment of the hotline can serve as a virtual "department of complaint", said Avila, adding he has been proposing the establishment of a dedicated agency that can lend an ear to peoples’ woes.
Duterte has seen the impact of information technology on governance, said a marketing analyst, adding the proposed hotline can help the government look into problems, conflicts and complaints to find proper solutions.
The timeline on the establishment of the much-awaited hotline has not been revealed.
Earlier, during the campaign period ahead of the May 9 polls, Duterte called for a nationwide observation of curfew for minors, liquor ban after 12 midnight, and a no-smoking-policy in all public places, all of which need local government ordinances for proper implementation.
He promised to stop criminals, corrupt officials and illegal drug traders in three-to-six months.
He called on Congress to reinstate the death penalty and include hanging as a form of punishment for some heinous crimes.
He began working as president after his inauguration in Manila’s Malacanang presidential palace on June 30.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Published: Monday, July 4, 2016