Cayetano welcomes EO vs e-sabong, bats for ban on all forms of online gambling
MANILA, Philippines – Senator Alan Peter Cayetano recently said that President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s executive order maintaining the suspension of e-sabong operations nationwide is a “necessary step” to protecting the well-being of the Filipino people.
Cayetano said he believes EO No. 9 “will help prevent the negative consequences of online gambling, such as addiction and financial ruin.”
President Marcos had issued EO No. 9 on December 28, citing “an urgent need to reiterate the continued suspension of all e-sabong operations nationwide, clarify the scope of existing regulations and direct relevant agencies to pursue aggressive crackdown against illegal e-sabong operations, in accordance with law.”
Cayetano said the EO formalizes what then-President Rodrigo Duterte had done in May 2022 when he ordered a stop to all e-sabong operations in the country in the wake of the disappearance of 34 “sabungeros” in a case that had been linked to alleged game fixing.
Cayetano, who has consistently warned against e-sabong and its adverse effects since Congress began granting licenses to operators in late 2021, said aside from destroying lives and families, online cockfighting would lead to crimes.
“Bukod sa mga epekto nito sa mga pamilya, may link din ang e-sabong sa krimen tulad ng pagdukot sa 34 sabungero na January 2021 pa nawala,” he said.
“It is imperative that we do everything in our power to prevent such tragedies from occurring. Kailangan nating maseguro ang kaligtasan ng ating mga kababayan,” he added.
The former House Speaker had taken a hardline stance against e-sabong throughout 2021 and into 2022, calling for its abolition despite lawmakers approving Congressional licenses for online cockfighting operators.
With President Marcos issuing an EO to solidify Duterte’s action against e-sabong, Cayetano said he will expand his campaign to include all forms of online gambling, which he said has been slowly taking root in the country.
“E-sabong has been getting the most attention because of the disappearance of 34 men, pero ang totoo niyan, lumalalim na ang ugat ng iba’t ibang klase ng online gambling sa ating bansa,” he said.
The senator also encouraged the Church and other religious groups to continue speaking out against the evils of e-sabong.
“Marami tayong mga kababayan, lalo na ang kabataan, na hindi naiintindihan kung bakit nakakasira ng moral fiber ng ating lipunan ang e-sabong at online gambling. Ang pag-asa po natin ay kung ang mga ministro, mga pari, mga pastor, imam, ulama ay magsama-sama na ituro ang paraan ng ating Panginoon,” he said.
“We will continue what we started. Hindi lang e-sabong ang dapat itigil kundi lahat ng uri ng online gambling,” he added.