Poe, Hontiveros: End Pogo now after Chi-Fil trader's kidnap-slay | Inquirer News

Poe, Hontiveros: End Pogo now after Chi-Fil trader’s kidnap-slay

By: - Reporter / @BPinlacINQ
/ 04:17 PM March 27, 2023

Senator Grace Poe and Senator Risa Hontiveros

Senator Grace Poe and Senator Risa Hontiveros pressed for a final decision on the proposal to permanently phase out Pogos in light of the recent kidnap-slay of a Filipino-Chinese businessman.

MANILA, Philippines — To ban or not to ban?

Senators Grace Poe and Risa Hontiveros on Monday pressed for a final decision on the proposal to permanently close down Philippine offshore gaming operators (Pogos) in light of the recent kidnap-slay of a Chinese-Filipino businessman.


Their firm call followed the arrest of four foreign nationals – three Chinese and one Vietnamese – for the alleged abduction and murder of 62-year-old Mario Uy, whose body was recovered in Tanza, Cavite, on March 22.


READ: 3 Chinese, 1 Vietnamese held for allegedly kidnapping, killing Tsinoy 

While the arrest was a welcome development, Poe said authorities must must end these kidnappings and ensure people won’t have to pay ransoms.

“Bolder steps are needed to suppress kidnap-for-ransom groups, which have grown more brazen, and reportedly aided by rogue or AWOL (absent without official leave) military or police,” she said in a statement.

The Movement for Restoration of Peace and Order (MRPO) earlier said it found that AWOL police and military guns for hire were involved in Uy’s kidnapping.

According to the MRPO, Uy’s body was also discovered “with gunshot wounds and torture marks, including a big toe cut off, the same way the Pogo syndicates treat their victims.”

“We await decisive actions on the operation of Pogos, which we repeatedly said has ushered in criminality, including kidnappings,” Poe said.

Hontiveros, for her part, expressed confidence that authorities are already looking into the angle of the brutal killing being related to the Pogo industry.


She said the potential involvement of Pogos in the brazen murder would no longer be surprising since they had long been notorious for their participation in a string of crimes like prostitution, tax evasion and illegal detention, among others.

“Should this incident be proven to be Pogo-related, it will only strengthen our longstanding call to kick Pogos out of the country. I also urge Malacañang to support the Senate’s proposal to ban Pogos now. Walang mabuting naidala sa bansa kaya’t palayasin na (They’re not doing the country good, so it would be best to cast them out),” Hontiveros said.

Senator Sherwin Gatchalian, head of the chamber’s ways and means panel, led a series of hearings to look into the socioeconomic cost of Pogos.

Last week, Gatchalian released his chairman’s report recommending a total ban on Pogos. He argued that the Filipino people would “lose more than they will gain” from Pogos’ continued presence in the country.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

Gatchalian has since expressed confidence that President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. will back his recommendation, especially when the chief executive’s economic team wants Pogos shut down. – with reports from Denver Godezano, trainee


‘Game over’: Gatchalian wants permanent ban on POGOs

Kidnapping in Pogo industry still ‘unabated,’ says Gatchalian

TAGS: Grace Poe, phaseout, POGOs

© Copyright 1997-2024 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.