Five days short of his official assumption to office, President-elect Rodrigo R. Duterte revealed that his administration will be more direct in acting on the most common of public grievances with a 24-hour hotline accessible to every Filipino.
Duterte, in an exclusive interview with singer Mocha Uson over the weekend said the 24-hour hotline for public grievances will be created under the Office of the President.
Other reports online said Duterte’s office will provide 12 hotline numbers for public complaints of corruption in government offices.
Speaking in Cebu during Saturday night’s victory party, Duterte said the hotline numbers will be manned by persons who will note complaints of corrupt practices by government officials. He said he will deal with these corrupt officials directly and humiliate them.
Meanwhile in Uson’s interview, Duterte acknowledged that he will need extraordinary powers to solve Metro Manila’s traffic woes. “Kung pumayag ang Congress, we will declare a crisis,” he said.
The interview, posted by Uson on her Facebook page, MOCHA USON BLOG, also showed Duterte’s resolve in cutting long queues for public documents from various government agencies – a concern raised by many overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).
Mocha Uson with President-elect Rodrigo Duterte / Photo courtesy of Mocha Uson FB page
He mentioned creating a new office under the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) that will perform the functions of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), and the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).
These three offices are responsible for issuing pertinent documents needed by jobseekers in securing employment locally or abroad.
“Napakahaba ng pila, mahigit five hours ang paghihintay, mayaman man o mahirap pantay-pantay ang pagdadaanan at WALANG VIP treatment (The lines are so long, taking five hours of waiting; rich or poor, everyone has to wait there should be no special treatment)” Uson said as she presented Duterte with a summary of common Filipino concerns she got from a survey conducted through her blog.
In response, the incoming President said the DOLE can host the one-stop shop for documents necessary for employment. “So, one-stop na lang ang Pilipino,” Duterte said. “Ayaw ko nang magtatakbo-takbo pa ang Pilipino (Filipinos will have a one-stop shop. I don’t want Filipinos running here and there chasing after documents).”
On another issue, Uson said: “Marami pong inaapi ng government agencies. Halimbawa, matagal na pong empleyado ‘yung mga magulang nila pero after so many years, wala pa rin pong benefits (A lot of workers have been abused by government agencies. For example, long-time employees are left without benefits after years of service).”
Duterte said all these are cases of “crime and corruption,” which his incoming administration has vowed to end.
He also discussed his plans in pushing for the re-imposition of the death penalty.
“It’s Congress who can re-impose the death penalty, but I’m asking for it because it is needed by the times,” he explained.
In the video-blog, Duterte was shown reading through the list from Uson and then reassured that concerns on drugs and corruption have been noted and will be acted upon.