The Presidential Hotline, 17737, is a toll-free number set up by the Presidency during 2009 that can be used by the public when all other attempts to get assistance from a government department, province, municipality or state agency have failed. It is not only a complaints line but can also be used to share views or suggest solutions to the Presidency to resolve challenges in communities.
The hotline and public liaison staff in the Presidency are backed by Public Liaison Officers in all government departments and Offices of Premiers in all nine provinces. These Public Liaison Officers are designated with the responsibility of following up the public enquiries and complaints lodged, and ensuring that all are attended to efficiently.
The hotline and public liaison service aims to encourage an all-round improvement in citizen care and liaison and introduce a culture of putting the citizen first in all government departments as well as municipalities. This is an integral part of the President’s directive to create an interactive, accessible and responsive government.
During September 2011, the Presidency announced that the hotline had received 111 751 valid queries, since it was first introduced. Of these queries, 84 700 of the cases had been attended to and resolved. This translates to a 75 % case resolution rate. Of all the calls logged nationally, 70% are complaints, 27% are enquiries and 1.8% are suggestions and compliments.
The Free State Province
With the introduction of the Presidential Hotline, all provinces were expected to establish similar services, and to create a forum that includes liaison officers for each municipality so that the service is taken to local government level, including rural municipalities and districts.
The Provincial Call Centre component of the Intervention Unit in the Office of the Director General is responsible for dealing with matters referred to the Free State by the Presidential Hotline.
Municipalities and Departments have appointed Public Liaison Officers to whom cases are referred. Cases are referred to relevant institutions and reports must be received within determined time-frames on how each specific matter is attended to or resolved.
The Free State has maintained its position as the second best performing province and has increased its average resolve rate for 2011 to 90 %. This resolve rate has been maintained for 2012.
The five main complaints logged on the Presidential Hotline and referred to the Free State are;
- A place to live
- Employment / world of work
- Water for Household Use
- Sanitation, refuse and sewage