Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella (right) | CDN Digital File Photo
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella has written to Police Colonel Gemma Vinluan, Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) director, to trace and apprehend those involved in illegal gambling operating in the city.
In a letter dated October 10, 2019, Labella said he received reports on illegal gambling proliferating among the barangays that had “preyed on the vulnerability of the marginalized members of the society.”
“Individuals and organizations engaged in illegal numbers game including small town lottery (STL) outlets that have resumed their operations and all persons engaged in other forms of illegal gambling punishable under Republic Act 9287 must be hunted down and prosecuted to the fullest extent under the law,” said Labella in the letter.
The mayor said he wants an extensive investigation on the incident and identify the people behind the illegal operations.
He has asked for a report on the crackdown against illegal gambling in Cebu City that the city might use to create executive and legislative interventions to minimize the illegal activity in the city.
Labella expects a detailed and comprehensive report of the investigation within a “reasonable period of time.”
As of October 26, 2019, the ban on STLs has not been lifted for Cebu City by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) since the STL operators in Cebu City still owed PCSO remittances totalling to around P200 million.
There are around 2,000 STL outlets in Cebu City, according to data gathereda from the city’s licensing permit office, which also based its figures from what was provided to the office by the PCSO. /dbs