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Another first of its kind, Tabaco City, once again, is at the forefront of the newest citizen feedback initiative (CFI) in this part of the global region.

“Tingog 2015” is a localized CFI re-launched on Saturday, 10 November 2012 to mark the start of its implementation phase. A flash mob dancing to the tune of ‘Gangnam Style’ rocked the city of Tabaco during the launching event.

This initiative of United Nations Millennium Campaign (UNMC), piloted in Kenya, Africa, stands on the premise of citizens who are informed of their rights. The tool has been launched in Sehore and Koraput, India, in 2011.

Now being implemented in Tabaco City, Tingog 2015, wherein design phase was commenced last 17 October 2011, is the fastest way for our policymakers and local leaders to deliver basic services to the community through the use of text messaging and the internet.

The people of Tabaco City may report complaints and send feedback on public health services, including the expanded program on immunization, maternal health, reproductive health, medical consultation, tuberculosis, and nutrition. They may forward their reports or complaints to 2015 by typing in: TINGOG___REP___barangay___message. All mobile carriers are supported by this platform with a fee of Php 1.00 for every text message.

“Achieving the MDGs not only requires strong leadership and political will; more importantly, it requires citizen commitment and action,” said Tabaco City Mayor Krisel Lagman-Luistro in a press statement released during the media launch held on 22 November 2012 at Romulo Café in Bel-Air, Makati City where in the big telecommunication players- Globe, Smart and Sun - expressed its unwavering support in this endeavor.

Tingog, a Bicol term for “voice”, was chosen to name this program to emphasize its aim to empower citizens to express their rights.

“When people are involved, we empower them to use their collective voices for development and progress, and build a community united toward a shared goal,” Mayor Luistro explained further.

Only two in the entire Philippines were chosen to implement this program - Tabaco on the city level and Agusan del Sur for the provincial level.

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