Luzon mayors ask Marcos to stop plan to revive e-sabong

Luzon mayors ask Marcos to stop plan to revive e-sabong

/ 04:35 AM June 26, 2024

e-sabong stock photo

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, PAMPANGA, Philippines — At least 125 mayors in seven chapters of the League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP) in Luzon have appealed to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to retain the suspension order on electronic “sabong” (e-sabong) amid reports of the game’s revival.

The LMP chapters in Aurora, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Zambales and Sorsogon provinces, joined by the city governments of Angeles and Mabalacat in Pampanga, have asked the President “not to allow the reintroduction” of online cockfighting through separate resolutions passed last month.


Former President Rodrigo Duterte suspended e-sabong starting May 3, 2022. Marcos directed the continued suspension through Executive Order No. 9 on Dec. 28, 2022. The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) implemented both orders.


READ: Marcos Jr. orders continued suspension of e-sabong; calls it urgent reminder

A list released by Pagcor at the request of the Inquirer showed that nine licenses for e-sabong were issued between April 2021 and May 1, 2022, to Lucky 8 Star Quest, Belvedere Vista Corp., Visayas Cockers Club Inc., E-Sports Encuentro Live Corp., Jade Entertainment 7 Gaming Tech Inc., Newin Cockers Alliance Gaming Corp., Philippine Cockfighting Int’l Inc., Golden Buzzer Inc. and Kamura Highlands.

Their operations have been considered illegal since the ban, a Pagcor official said.

In the resolutions, the mayors said they opposed the revival after they received information that “certain personalities associated with a group that profited immensely from the past e-sabong operations are poised to reintroduce online sabong.”


They did not identify those pushing for the comeback but confirmed learning about the plan from what they described as “highly reliable sources” in Congress and Pagcor.

Pagcor’s external communications confirmed that “there were those who wrote to appeal the lifting of suspension during the time of [Mr. Marcos].”


“But Pagcor no longer acted on the request,” it said, explaining that the e-sabong department was “dissolved.”

“To recall, His Excellency ordered the continued suspension of e-sabong because of a growing public outrage against its continued operation following reports of widespread addiction to online gambling; bankruptcy, and heavy indebtedness of players that oftentimes led to [the] breakdown of families, sometimes to suicide,” a part of the LMP Pampanga resolution stated.

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It said the social impact included “impoverishment and distraction of our overseas Filipino workers, and the rise in the incidence of crimes, culminating in the revelation about several missing ‘sabungeros’ who, up to now, are unaccounted for.”

TAGS: e-sabong, League of Municipalities of the Philippines, suspension

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