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ALOR STAR: The Urban Transformation Centre (UTC), a one-stop centre for various agencies, has set a new benchmark for the government delivery system as no other country provides such a service to its people.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak described the UTC, which operates from 8.30am to 10.30pm daily, except for public holidays, as a one-of-a-kind platform that optimised government services under one roof.
Najib said the UTC, which was born out of a brainstorming session through the National Blue Ocean Strategy, reflected the government’s creative and innovative approaches in pushing the benchmark of its delivery system to the people.
"These UTCs not only boost the people's convenience by pooling various government agencies together, but also ensure that they provide efficient services to customers.
"For example, one can get his international passport done within just one or two hours at the Immigration Department counter in UTC," Najib said at the opening of the Kedah UTC Complex here yesterday.
Present were Menteri Besar Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir, Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Mohamad Hanadzlah and Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Dr Ali Hamsa.
Najib said the Kedah UTC, the fifth in the country, would also be the first to offer a value-added service, the Community Service Desk (CSD), under UTC's second phase.
Through CSD, he said, the public may apply to any government agency operating at the centre to organise a programme at their respective communities or even at the UTC building itself.
"For example, a village head may apply to the relevant agency to organise a health talk or a blood donation drive in his community and the application will be channelled to the relevant 1Malaysia Clinic.
"Under the second phase of the UTC initiative, the centres will also serve as platforms to encourage healthy activities at community level, apart from providing various over the counter services to the rakyat."
Najib said the opening of the Kedah UTC was also a gift to the people for returning their faith to Barisan Nasional during the 13th General Election in May.
"We want to ensure that the UTC is lively, in line with the urban renewal concept to turn Alor Star into a metropolitan city."
Najib also announced that the building, previously known as Majlis Bandaraya Alor Star had been renamed Kedah UTC Complex.
Kedah UTC Complex which operates in a five-storey building, is the biggest UTC in the country to date.
The Finance Ministry had invested RM50.5 million for massive renovation and refurbishment works to transform the building from a deserted shopping mall into a new landmark for Alor Star city.
Kedah UTC is a one-stop centre for 32 state and federal agencies such as the Immigration Department, National Registration Department, Road Transport Department, 1Malaysia Clinic, Inland Revenue Board, Tabung Haji, Social Security Organisation as well as the offices of the Youth and Sports Ministry and Women, Family and Community Development Ministry. Additional reporting by Ili Shazwani