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MVP: 95% of initial '8888' and '911' calls were prank
« on: August 03, 2016, 01:05:47 PM »
MVP: 95% of initial '8888' and '911' calls were prank
By Ma. Cristina C. Arayata

MANILA, Aug. 2 (PNA) -- PLDT Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan said on Tuesday 95 percent of the initial calls they received for the "8888" and "911" hotlines were prank.

Both launched on Monday, Hotline 911 is the country's national emergency hotline number, while citizen's hotline 8888 is the public's hotline to air complaints against government officials or services.

"Actually, we expected that (receiving many prank calls)," Pangilinan said on the sidelines of PLDT's briefing on its first-half financial and operating results.

He explained that the company had experienced the same scenario when the country had the hotline 117 (same function as 911) during the Arroyo administration.

Access to Hotline 117 was provided for free in both landlines and mobile phones at that time.

PLDT-Smart charges "911" and "8888" calls based on regular rates, and depending on airtime usage if one uses his/her mobile phone.

The company, however, is willing to provide free access to these hotlines if the government requires them to do so.

Patterned after Davao City's Central 911, the Hotline 911 works 24/7 for crime prevention, and to maintain order and public safety.

It is a result of President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s order for quick action and help for every Filipino who is in distress.

Hotline 8888, on the other hand, aims to reduce corruption and red tape in the government bureaucracy.

The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has earlier appealed to the public not to make prank calls.

Both the government and PLDT are discouraging prank callers, citing that someone in need might not be able to access the hotline at the same time pranksters are calling. (PNA)
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