Guv still gloats over STL, leaves bookies to PNP

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APPARENTLY still gloating over the fact that he was left out in the selection of the Small Town Lottery (STL) operator in Iloilo, Gov. Arthur Defensor Sr. said he will let the police shoulder the burden of eliminating illegal gambling in the province.

Defensor said he already told Iloilo Provincial Office (IPPO) Director Harold Tuzon to strictly implement the law on anti-illegal gambling.

The PNP on Feb. 13, 2017 declared an “all-out war” against illegal gambling.

Defensor said that while the campaign against illicit numbers games is also a mandate of the local government unit, the main responsibility is on the PNP.

“Indi na akon problema. Problema na sang PNP. It is the PNP who should be accountable to the people in case there is failure in the implementation of the anti-illegal gambling campaign,” he said.

Defensor also reiterated his dismay with the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) for not consulting the provincial government before approving STL operations in Iloilo.

PCSO awarded the STL franchise to Eagle-Crest Gaming and Holding Corp., which is expected to start operations end of February.

The governor also hit PCSO over the reduction of the province’s share of the charity fund, from 5 percent to 0.75 percent.

“Implement the law as strictly as possible. Pero indi ako ya accountable sa resulta sang kampanya. Kay sa STL gani waay sila licensya kag pabalo sa aton. Tapos buhinan pa nila share sang provincial government,” he said.

Defensor refused to further comment on the ongoing debate that the STL is illegal because it is not included in the PCSO charter.

Earlier, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez claimed that STL is not under the purview of PCSO.

“Bahala na sila da. Sila na pabinaisay da kay sila man gadesisyon… Ang madamo parte amo na manginmatay sa kampanya nga na,” he added.

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