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PIA Press Release

Tansport groups push 'PNP Text Anti-Kotong project' institutionalization

Manila (29 August) -- "Sa buwan ng July at August, umpisa ng i-launch ang proyektong ito, wala na halos nangongotong" (For the months of July and August, since the launching of this project, we have observed almost no incident of mulcting/ extortion in the road), so said Jess Cortez of the Confederation of Truckers Association of the Philippines (CTAP) during the 7th Assessment meeting at the Main Conference Room, National Headquarters of the PNP, Camp Crame, Quezon City on August 28, 2008.

This, as other stakeholders from various trasport groups bats for the institutionalization of the "PNP Text Anti-Kotong Project" which was launched in November 2007 and scheduled to culminate in December 2008.

In support of this move, the Federation of Jeepney Operators and Drivers Association of the Philippines, Inc. (FEJODAP) representative Mr. Cris Llanos said their group will write a letter to PNP Chief Avelino Razon, Jr. to prolong the project as this has made a significant impact to the deter the prevalence of 'kotong' incidences especially in the transport sector.

The Alliance of Transport Operators & Drivers Association of the Philippines (ALTODAP) representative, Mr. Boy Alvarez, was quick to support the intention, saying "Gumanda na ang takbo ng transportasyon although meron paring mangilan-ngilan (insidente ng pangongotong)" (The flow of transportation has become almost seamless though only a few cases of mulcting/ extortion can still be observed).

For its part, Bantay Bayan Foundation, another stakeholder of the project, encouraged the Philippine National Police (PNP) to push through the project while asking the transportation groups to put into writing this request. In a statement, Dr. Bienvenido Caralde of Bantay Bayan said, "Maraming ng magandang resulta (dahil sa proyektong ito)" (A lot of positive results have come out of this project).

In response to these statements, PSSUPT Manolito Labador, Chief of LED and Project Manager of the 'PNP Text Anti-Kotong Project' said these manifestations must be put into writing so the PNP could endorse the request to Malacaņang.

Since its launching on November 12, 2007, the project has already received 1,912 'kotong' complaints and have been acted upon. It continues to receive text complaints via 0927-515-1515 with an average daily text complaints of 10 on a nationwide scale. Complaints received via this number are being processed and handled by the PNP's 'Kotong Incident Management System' (KIMS).

So far, the project has paved the way for the arrest of 33 PNP personnel, 8 LTO officers, 8 LTFRB officers, 3 LGU Traffic enforcers, and 19 civilians.

During the State of the Nation Address 2008, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo made mention of the government's resolve to intensify the "anti-kotong campaign" of the government to help the drivers and the transport sector receive a better income. (PIA-MMIO) [top]

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