Monday, April 15, 2024

Tulfo wants to stop PCSO’s E-Lotto operation

Sen. Raffy Tulfo said during a Senate hearing on Thursday, Jan. 18, that he will pursue the scrapping of the PCSO’s newly launched E-Lotto system.

During the hearing, Tulfo said he wants to prohibit online placing of bets for lotto games and instant paper games including digit games, Small Town Lottery (STL), and other instant paper games as defined by the PCSO 2022 revised rules and regulations.

In August last year, Tulfo said he filed Senate Bill No. 2374 to address the issue being raised by various stakeholders against the PCSO’s new policy.

“In its effort to address the issues raised by PCSO’s stakeholders, this committee continuously endeavored to invite PCSO to shed light in all the controversies arising out of its move to transition to E-Lotto,” Tulfo said.  

“Our call fell on deaf ears, PCSO sent all kinds of excuses purposely to avoid and prevent this committee from performing its constitutionally mandated task. This has to end right here and right now.”

The lawmaker further said the proposed bill strives “to safeguard public welfare, protect vulnerable individuals, and encourage responsible gambling practices, thereby contributing to a safer and more regulated gambling landscape in the nation”.

During the same time that the Senate was conducting the hearing, the PCSO announced the first ever lotto winner who bought a ticket through the E-Lotto system.

The lone bettor won the jackpot prize of P698,806,269.20 in the GrandLotto 6/55 after picking the right number combination 24-50-52-09-51-03. The draw was conducted on Wednesday, Jan. 17.

The huge pot was second highest jackpot won by a single winner ever in the counrty’s lotto history. The highest was P741 million won by New York- based Filipino who was on vacation when he bought a lotto ticket in Olongapo in 2010.

According to PCSO assistant general manager Arnel Casas, as of Jan. 15, a total of 126,429 has opened their E-Lotto accounts.

It was only last Dec. 15 that the PCSO launched the test run of its E-Lotto online betting platform. The E-Lotto, which is a digital version of the traditional lottery games, is initially available on the Web via the PCSO website. The Android and iOS apps are expected to become available early next year.

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