Duterte’s apology on e-sabong is ‘better late than never,’ senators say
MANILA, Philippines—For some senators, President Rodrigo Duterte’s apology for his “very late” realization of the ill effects of e-sabong or online cockfighting is “better late than never.”
Duterte even received praises from Senators Ronaldo “Bato” dela Rosa and Joel Villanueva for his “tenacity” to stop the e-sabong.
“Better late than never!” Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III said in a text message to reporters when sought for comment on Duterte’s apology.
Villanueva echoed Sotto in another text message, “Better late than never. We admire his tenacity to stop e-sabong after meticulously studied the ill effects of this online gambling.”
“Malaking bagay po para sa susunod na henerasyon na naging klaro ang polisiya ng Estado na mas mahalaga ang pag aalaga ang moralidad ng bayan kesa sa kitang ibibigay ng e-sabong. Nalantad rin ill effects na dulot nito na masasabing magdudulot ng irreparable damage sa mga pamilya at buong lipunan,”
Dela Rosa, meanwhile thanked Duterte “for finally giving more weight on the social costs brought about by e-sabong than the revenue that the government is collecting from it.”
“It is never too late,” said Dela Rosa, who earlier led the probe on missing cockfighting aficionados as chairman of the Senate committee on public order.
Duterte earlier rejected lawmakers’ call to stop the e-sabong operations, saying the government earns P640 million in revenue from it every month.
But in a speech in Tarlac on Tuesday, the President apologized for his decision to allow the continued operations of e-sabong.
Dela Rosa nevertheless expressed readiness to help the incoming administration of President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong”Marcos should it decide to continue the e-sabong operations.
“Personally, I am anti gambling but I don’t want to preempt the decision of the incoming admin,” the senator said.
“Should it decide to continue e-sabong operations the Senate is ready to provide the needed legislations in order to have it properly regulated and hopefully minimize the social costs it may bring,” he added.
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