Duterte permits online gambling to generate Covid-19 response funds

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email
Spread the love

MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte claimed on Wednesday that despite previously opposing internet gambling, he was compelled to allow it to help the country’s Covid-19 response budget.

Duterte stated in a pre-recorded meeting with his political party officers, that permitting gambling operations is the most “sensible” thing to do given the government’s financial constraints.

Itong sugal, bakit ko pinayagan? Wala tayong pera eh. Ngayon kasi kailangan natin ng pera (Why did I allow gambling? We don’t have money…Now that we need money), the most sensible thing is really just to encourage those activities. Though it may sound not really repulsive but maybe repugnant to some, eh magdusa na muna kayo kasi kailangan ko talaga ang pera para sa bayan (you have to deal with it because we need money for the country),” he said.

Duterte admitted that he formerly opposed the online gambling industry, saying that he even insisted on a no-casino policy in popular Boracay and Bohol resorts.

He claimed that the current pandemic has caused the government to use reserved funds from gambling operations.

“Sabi nila na lahat sa panahon ko pinayagan ko ang sugal (They say I allowed gambling during my time). Correct, that is true. I do not deny it. Now, I would like to bring your mind a few years back in time. ‘Di ba noong Presidente ako bago, sinabi ko ‘ayaw ko ng sugal’ (When I was newly installed as President, I said ‘I am against gambling’) and I never allowed it,” he said.

It was the only way, he said, to keep Covid-19 from infecting more people across the country.

“Pagdating ng pandemic, naubos ang pera natin. May reserba natin nagamit natin lahat (When it comes to the pandemic, we’re running out of money. We used up all our reserved funds) to contain the viral virus from rampaging all throughout the country,” he added.

Duterte, on the other hand, stated that he is still opposed to gambling “at the barangay-level,” claiming that it would be more difficult to regulate.

Despite the fact that Malacañang acknowledges Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGOs) as the government’s tax revenue generators in the midst of the current health crisis, it would not allow them to avoid paying the proper taxes.

In the Philippines, approximately 60 POGOs have obtained licenses to operate.

DOTr: NAIA privatization doable in 2024

Spread the love

Spread the loveMANILA — The privatization of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) may be implemented by the first quarter of 2024, according