Crackdown on undocumented, overstaying POGO workers by the PNP

With all the media buzz and attention on Philippine Offshore Gaming Operations (POGOs) related to crime (read my previous POGO post by clicking here), the Philippine National Police (PNP) vowed to do a crackdown on the foreign workers of POGOs which are estimated to be in the hundreds of thousands, according to a news report by the Manila Bulletin. The crackdown is supposedly a part of security measures to combat different types of crime.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin news report. Some parts in boldface…

The Philippine National Police (PNP) vowed on Monday, Sept. 19, to intensify the crackdown against hundreds of thousands of foreign workers of Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGO) as part of the security measures against kidnapping and other criminal activities related to offshore gambling in the country.

Based on the initial estimate of the PNP from the data provided by the Bureau of Immigration (BI), there were at least 800,000 Chinese in the country. most of them easily entered the Philippines when POGO operations in the country were approved.

And based on the PNP data through its Anti-Kidnapping Group (AKG), the number of kidnapping cases steeply went up since 2017, most of them are POGO-related.

PNP chief Gen. Rodolfo Azurin, Jr. said the sad part of the POGO workers entry in the country in the past years is that they were not properly documented–attributing it to the privilege accorded to them wherein their visa and travel documents are approved after their arrival.

“There were an estimated 800,000 Chinese in the country and we do not know if that 800,000 are still documented. Maybe some of them are already undocumented that is why we are suggesting to the PAGCOR (Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation) to furnish us the copy o the approved POGOs so that our crackdown would be easier,” said Azurin.

PNP officials earlier met with PAGCOR and BI officials to discuss the issues related to POGO operations in the country.

A few days ago, over 40 Chinese POGO workers were rescued from the clutches of their abductors while a number of Chinese were also arrested for involvement in kidnapping and other criminal activities.

On Saturday, the PNP and the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) ordered a closure of POGO in Angeles City in Pampanga.

“The reason why we engaged PAGCOR and BI and even DOJ (Department of Justice) is that we really need to put our acts together. We should share information together to monitor the entry of Chinese in the country,” said Azurin.

System of Monitoring

Azurin earlier disclosed that the PNP maintained a hands-off policy on POGO since they were told before not to meddle on POGO-issues unless there would be a crime that would be committed.

With the PNP being bashed on the social media in the past weeks, Azurin started training his eyes on POGO after learning that almost of kidnapping cases, some of them went viral, involved POGO workers.

He said there is a need to strictly monitor the entry and the status of POGO workers in the country as part of the peace and order.

Aside from BI intervention in the documentation process, Azurin said they also want the PAGCOR to regularly update them of the legal POGO operators in the country.

In this way, he explained that they would be able to locate the overstaying POGO workers in the country.

Azurin also recommended that all POGO workers must secure both police and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) clearances before they are allowed to work in the Philippines.

He issued the recommendation after they noticed that the government has no proper system in the documentation of POGIO workers.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: What is your reaction to this new development? Do you support the PNP’s crackdown on the undocumented and overstaying POGO workers all over the nation? Does your local community have lots of foreigners who are currently employed by POGOs? Do you think that some of the foreign employees of POGOs are fugitives from overseas? Whenever you see Chinese nationals physically present in your local community, do you often think about POGOs immediately?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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270 people apprehended in Parañaque City for online sabong

The latest Parañaque City crime news are here and not only was it about a relatively new form of gambling but it also involved a few hundred suspects! Two hundred and seventy suspects to be precise according to a news report by the Manila Bulletin.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin news report. Some parts in boldface…

Parañaque City police apprehended on Saturday 270 individuals for playing online “sabong” (cockfight) and for failure to observe social distancing.

Prior to the suspects’ arrest, the police received information about mass gatherings inside the Roligon Mega Cockpit Arena on Quirino Avenue in Paranaque City, according to city police chief Col. Maximo Sebastian.

Sebastian said cops in the nearby police sub-station were immediately dispatched and found the 270 gamblers playing online sabong.

He said the suspects were immediately rounded up and given citation tickets for violation of the health protocols under the new quarantine alert system.

The city police chief said those who will be caught for the first offense will be fined P1,000, P3,000 second for the second offense, and P5,000 for the third offense.

Sebastian also said the management of the arena failed to show a permit to operate online sabong.

He said the owner of the arena claimed they have a permit from PAGCOR and that their online sabong was just a dry run.

The above report ended stating that according to the police, any form of gambling is illegal under the new alert level.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: Do you believe the claim that a PAGCOR permit was really issued and that the online sabong was just a dry run or trial activity? How familiar are you with online sabong (AKA e-sabong)? Are there lots of people in your local community who engage in any form of gambling during this pandemic? Do you think that the criminal elements are building up illegal gambling all over Parañaque City?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: 20% discount for Philippine athletes and coaches confirmed

COVID-19 Crisis: 20% discount for Philippine athletes and coaches confirmed

As I write this, the Philippines is slowly taking steps to move its economy forward gradually now that community quarantine rules have eased more. This means more businesses are allowed to operate and this means getting more of their workforce back to work to earn much-needed income. It’s sometimes mind boggling how the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) from China turned into a pandemic which halted most societies and economies around the world.

For Philippine team athletes and coaches, times are hard as well. Very recently, news have been published that their allowances for this month will be cut by half! According to the Manila Standard report, the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) board decided to push through with the reduction following a May 29 board meeting with the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR). The remittance declared was reportedly P9 million for June 2020 which is a major drop compared to the P150.75 million PAGCOR remitted to PSC last March.

The National Sports Development Fund (NSDF) was reported to have been severely affected as a result of health-related measures and lockdown implemented nationwide in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

It sure is hard for athletes and coaches to train and develop themselves. Truly this is terrible news. Sports events, both local and overseas, have gotten cancelled.

All is not lost, however, as the PSC announced that its athletes and coaches will enjoy the benefits of a 20% discount for their needs.

Below is an excerpt from the PNA.gov article with text italicized and colored blue for clarity.

On Friday night, the PSC said the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) issued Revenue Regulation 13-2020, which paves the way for the discount clause to be fully implemented for all athletes.

“We have been looking forward to this and we are thankful that our athletes and coaches will finally enjoy the privilege they deserve,” said PSC chairman Butch Ramirez, whose organization has been working together with the BIR for the discount benefit to be fully enjoyed by local sportsmen.

The discount clause is part of Republic Act 10699, formally known as the “National Athletes and Coaches Benefits and Incentives Act”.

The discounts shall be applied to food, medicine, recreation centers, hotels, lodging establishments, and sports equipment purchases.

The PSC has already issued identification cards to national athletes, with booklets similar to those used by senior citizens for their own discounts, to follow.

With the reduced allowances and confirmed discount, the past week saw these really drastic announcements affecting the many athletes and coaches supported by the national government. Some things are won and some things are lost.

The COVID-19 crisis affected the private sector so much, it is expected that tax revenues on the part of the national government will be reduced on the short term at least. Think about all the many small businesses around the country that have closed down resulting job losses. Think about the national government’s efforts to support qualified people with cash assistance and other forms of relief.

Now think about the national athletes and coaches. They don’t just need cash to train efficiently for future sports events. They need private sponsorship, new sports equipment, solutions to their current problems, etc.

For more on Philippine sports and COVID-19 Crisis coverage, come back here soon.

Meanwhile, please check out my special features of 2019 Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) gold medalists John Chicano and Kim Mangrobang.


Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me as well. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me at HavenorFantasy@twitter.com