Online gambling wrecking lives, families–Ping


SEN. Panfilo Lacson  warned over the weekend that E-Sabong, or online gambling, is “wrecking lives and families.”

“It is resulting in ugly consequences for many Filipinos, so it is time for the government to give the problem urgent attention,” Lacson said, speaking mostly in Filipino.

The senator aired the warning during a “Kumustahan” press conference in San Rafael, Bulacan, pointing out that online gambling is high on the list of “society’s serious problems” now afflicting more Filipinos.

“A father of a family in Pampanga racked up debts of P600,000 because of E-Sabong.  He killed himself, leaving his children behind. Spo, the social problems follow” this, Lacson told reporters.

Echoing serious concerns that online gambling is more addictive than actual gambling, the senator stressed: “It’s more addicting to engage in online gambling compared to actual gamling because the player does not feel the actual move of bringing out money; the government also cannot fully regulate online gamling because the law is limited in governing this kind of activity.”

Lacson cautioned that in online gambling, “bettors do not see the actual cash bet going out, so they just go ahead and that is where the social problems arise.”

He said they will also look into “E-Sabong” along with all other betting games using the internet. “No law governs E-Sabong and the proposal to have government craft rules for this remains pending in committee level at the Senate,” he said.

For his part, Senate President Vicente Sotto III, Lacson’s running mate in the 2022 race, foresees the lawmakers getting pinned in the middle in crafting a law regulating cockfights.

My view there is, we’re caught between the devil and the deep blue sea. Why? If you don’t give that a franchise, they will still go ahead and operate, but illegally. And when we say illegal,   since it’s online, cheating is possible.”

On the other hand, Sotto added: “If you give them a franchise, then you face the problem that Senator Lacson is pointing to—it becomes a problem of many people. It’s not just at the national, but also international level, right?”

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