Friday, April 19, 2024

Passage of anti-online gambling bill pushed amidst resurgence of e-sabong

Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano on Thursday, Jan. 25,  called for the passage of the Anti-Online Gambling Act amidst persistent reports of e-sabong operations continuing in the country despite being suspended by the government.

This as the Committee on Games and Amusement revealed in a Senate hearing that e-sabong continues to thrive and has evolved into smaller, more clandestine operations.

In 2022, during the height of disappearances of cockfighters and other issues linked to e-sabong, Cayetano filed Senate Bill No. 63, aimed at prohibiting all forms of online gambling and penalizing online wagering or betting.

“The pull of gambling, especially over the Internet, makes it more alluring for our kababayan who cannot help but engage in such activities desperately hoping to immediately win large sums of money,” he said.

“Online gambling platforms such as e-sabong have demonstrated how it can destroy the moral fiber of our nation,” he added.

Despite the suspension, police have had their hands full arresting hundreds of individuals engaged in clandestine e-sabong nationwide.

Cayetano’s bill proposes imposing maximum penalties, including imprisonment and fines for violators. It mandates, for instance, the dismissal of public employee offenders from service, permanent disqualification from holding public office, and prohibits them from voting or participating in elections.

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