Anti-red tape facility adds SMS feature

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The Civil Service Commission (CSC) has announced that citizens may now access the Contact Center ng Bayan (CCB) via SMS by sending a text message to 090-888-16565.

The government’s central helpline is also accessible nationwide by dialing 1-6565 using PLDT, Smart, and Digital landlines, Mondays to Fridays, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Each call to 1-6565 costs P5 plus VAT.

CSC Chairman Francisco T. Duque III said the additional channel will make it easier for the public to complain about inefficiency, discourtesy, and fixing in government services. Accessibility of CCB via SMS started last December 3, 2012.

For CCB’s initial implementation, six agencies — CSC, National Computer Center, Bureau of Internal Revenue, Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, Department of Health, and Department of Trade and Industry — have electronically interconnected their call centers to the CCB.

Citizens may call the CCB for instances of red tape and poor quality service in government agencies, such as fixing or collusion with fixers, disruption of service during lunch break, no Citizen’s Charter posted within the agency premises, and imposition of additional fees or requirements not stated in the Citizen’s Charter.

The CCB is anchored on the Anti-Red Tape Act (ARTA) of 2007, a law which aims to improve public service delivery. — Robert E. Roperos, PIA-Caraga

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