99% of calls to 999 are hoaxes

  • Nation
  • Friday, 17 Jan 2014

Women, Welfare and Community Development Minister Datuk Rohani Karim visiting the Nur Tele Centre in Petaling Jaya yesterday. At left is a customer service officer Shahizan Mohamed Hilaluddin.

KUALA LUMPUR: About 99% of the 2.8 million emergency calls made each month are false.

Bernama reported Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Min­ister Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan as saying that the false calls over 999 were either made by callers who remained silent, or mischievous children.

“It is most unfortunate that, because of this irresponsible act, the 999 line is always busy, preventing genuine calls from getting through,” he told reporters after a visit to the Malaysia Emergency Response Services’ 999 (MERS 999) operation centre here yesterday.

Meanwhile, the nation’s integrated call centre, Talian Nur 15999, received about 520,000 phone calls since its launch in December 2007. Of the number, about 100,000 were prank calls.

“It’s annoying because we’re trying to deal with something serious,” Women, Welfare and Community Development Minister Datuk Rohani Karim (pic) said after visiting the call centre here yesterday.

She said the helpline also received non-related calls like enquiries on housing and health matters.

“Despite the prank calls, Talian Nur has achieved its objectives,” said Rohani, pointing out that its call agents solved 90% of the complaints and enquiries.

On the types of complaints, she said children topped the list with 81,483 calls, socio-economic assistance (61,010), senior citizens and family (26,740), counselling and psychology (13,954), national key result area (10,217) and human reproduction (5,981).

On the need to have a Maintenance of Parents Act to prevent the abandoning of old folks, Rohani said such laws caused more harm than good after studying countries that had such laws.

“We studied the situation in Singapore and India, but there is more negative feedback instead,” she said. “One is that the law caused estranged relationship among family members,” said Rohani.

There are currently about 2,000 people in old folks’ homes operated by the Welfare Department, and another 2,000 or so in NGO-operated homes.

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