Cleanliness, roads and footpaths top complaints among residents

In 2015, about 24,500 issues were submitted. From January last year to June this year, that increased to 86,500.
In 2015, about 24,500 issues were submitted. From January last year to June this year, that increased to 86,500. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

Spike in number of people using that and Web portal to give feedback on municipal issues

When engineer Ng Chang Chong, 31, noticed that there was a crack in the footpath near his Clementi home in April, he used his mobile phone to take a picture.

Less than two weeks later, the footpath was repaired after the authorities received his feedback through the OneService app.

"It is a small path leading to the HDB block but many residents use it daily. I've seen people on wheelchairs who had difficulty passing through," said Mr Ng, who had been initially sceptical about the app, thinking that no one would take his feedback seriously.

"The holes in the footpath seem very minor. Without the app, I wouldn't know which is the right agency to go to. Some may also think it a hassle to go down to the town council office or send an e-mail to report any issues."

Mr Ng is among a growing number of residents using the OneService app and Web portal to give feedback on municipal issues since it was launched in January 2015 and September last year respectively.

In 2015, about 24,500 issues were submitted. From January last year to June this year, that increased to 86,500. The majority of feedback - 21 per cent - were on "roads and footpaths", which as a feedback category also covers road signs, street lights and covered linkways.

Feedback on cleanliness, such as overflowing bins and discarded bulky items, formed 19 per cent, according to latest figures by the Municipal Services Office which developed the feedback channel.

  • 86,500 Number of issues submitted by residents using the OneService app and Web portal from January last year to June this year.

    24,500 Number of issues submitted in 2015.

Pests in common areas and food establishments accounted for about 9 per cent on OneService.

There are now more than 94,000 registered users, an increase of 47 per cent from last year.

Last week, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Grace Fu, who oversees the MSO, announced a new feedback category for facilities in HDB estates. This category would cover dumping in common areas, and the maintenance of playground and fitness facilities, HDB carparks and lighting.

Most of the town councils The Straits Times spoke to currently see an average of 150 cases a month through OneService.

A spokesman for Marine Parade Town Council said that with the enhanced features, it expects more residents to send in their feedback.

Jurong-Clementi Town Council's spokesman said the app's geo-tagging features has helped the town councils locate and resolve issues quickly. "Our staff cannot be present everywhere in the town at any one time," she said.

Said Mr Ng, who has lived in Clementi for 30 years: "If more people use the app and use it right, we can really help to improve our estate, even while we're on the go."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 24, 2017, with the headline 'OneService app a hit with residents'. Print Edition | Subscribe