City Government of Pasig
15 July 2019 – present
Digitization & New Technologies, and Perspectives on Productivity, Governance, and Development
Ugnayan sa Pasig (UsaP) is the 24/7 platform for the Pasig City Public Participation, Accountability, and Transparency Unit. It uses social media, email, and a telephone hotline to provide the people of Pasig with an avenue for complaints and service requests, including those for public information records.
Background and Problem
The City Government of Pasig passed Ordinance No. 37, otherwise known as the Pasig Transparency Mechanism Ordinance of 2018, in order to attempt to address growing public concerns about poor service delivery and corrupt practices throughout the local government unit (LGU). The ordinance’s original author, then-city councilor Vico Sotto, was elected mayor in 2019 and used the ordinance as the takeoff point for what would be his office’s flagship project to increase public engagement with and trust in local government.
Solution and Impact
UsaP was established through Ordinance No. 37 on 15 July 2019, within the first month of Sotto’s first term in office. The project aims to provide the public with an avenue for immediate assistance and easy access to documents related to information on various government services, projects, and transactions. It is designed to encourage active public participation in crafting effective policies by using a more dynamic approach to civil service that promotes honesty, transparency, and progress in the government, through its three main features:
- Magtanong: Presents citizens an avenue to ask and inquire about government activities and information;
- Magsumbong: Acts as a grievance mechanism for negative experiences with local government service delivery;
- Makilahok: Encourages public participation, especially from civil society and non-government organizations, in policy formulation and program implementation.
The Ugnayan sa Pasig office is located in one of city hall’s high traffic areas, and is manned by frontline information officers that could immediately furnish visitors with their requested information or direct them to the appropriate office that could assist them. The office also includes a desk that accepts and records complaints and suggestions directly, in addition to those already filed through email, social media, and the telephone hotline.
In its first year of implementation, the Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit had logged 61,475 total transactions, ranging from complaints and FOI requests to suggestions and direct interactions with walk-in users. It has also been actively engaged with other city departments for COVID-19 initiatives such as the the City Transport and Development Management Office’s Libreng Hatid Program and the Social Amelioration Program, which is implemented by the LGU together with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).
Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit’s Participation in the Libreng Hatid Program (Source: Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit – Freedom of Information Office)
Participation of Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit in the SAP Activities (Source: Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit – Freedom of Information Office)
“Kudos to Mayor Vico and UsaP staff. It is indeed a very good platform for queries, info dissemination, and action on complaints. Very helpful for Pasigueños because of prompt and direct interaction with the LGU through its receptive, efficient, and courteous staff. Highly Recommended!!!” – Josephine Rayo Bondoc, Citizen (Ugnayan sa Pasig Facebook Review, March 27, 2020)
“This serves as an easy access to inquiries and information about what is happening in our town and community. Thank you!” – Edna Martinez, Citizen (Ugnayan sa Pasig Facebook Review, May 20, 2020)
Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit 2020 Accomplishment Report (Source: Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit – Freedom of Information Office)
11-person team of the Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit (Source: Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit – Freedom of Information Office)
Gotinga, J. C. (2019, July 15). Pasig City opens hotline for complaints, public record requests. Rappler. Retrieved from https://www.rappler.com/nation/pasig-city-opens-hotline-complaints-public-record-requests-july-2019.
Madarang, C. R. S. (2021, December 3). Pasig implements city-wide ban on tarps, posters, other campaign materials in public spaces. Interaksyon. Retrieved December 3, 2021, from https://interaksyon.philstar.com/politics-issues/2021/12/03/205814/pasig-implements-city-wide-ban-on-tarps-posters-other-campaign-materials/.
Rayos-Dimanlig, W. (2019, July 15). Pasig City Launches “Ugnayan sa Pasig”. Pasig City Official Website. Retrieved from https://www.pasigcity.gov.ph/article-post?news=2442001
Ugnayan sa Pasig Unit – Freedom of Information Office (n.d.). Accomplishment Report 2020.