26, 2013

NR # 2996

House to probe small town lottery
A lawmaker has called for a congressional probe into reports that Small Town Lottery (STL) is being used as front for jueteng operations in the country. Rep. Ben Evardone (Lone District, Eastern Samar), author of House Resolution 2979, said some government and police officials are involved in the illegal numbers game. “They are acting as financier-operators, or protector-coddlers,” Evardone said. He said a number of jueteng lords had become political warlords and could thwart the people’s will in the coming 2013 mid-term elections. Evardone pushed for the probe as he noted reports that jueteng lords are using the STL as front for their operations in many parts of the country. Evardone identified the Meridien Vista Gaming Corporation which operates STL at the Cagayan Special Economic Zone and Free Port. “According to reports, Meridien Vista Gaming Corporation, whose operation is supposed to be confined to the Cagayan Economic Zone, is operating in other parts of the country,” Evardone said. The betting stations for jai-alai games of the Meridien Vista Gaming Corporation were also established in many parts of Luzon according to him. “There have been reports of mayors allowing Meridien Vista to operate jai-alai in their respective areas,” Evardone said. “Jueteng and other illegal gambling activities, which inherently pose grave threat to the morality of the Filipino people and endanger the economic growth and development of the country, are rampant in many parts of the country,” Evardone added. (30) eag

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