ELECTRONIC sabong (e-sabong) has brought "ill effect" to the community, which resulted in President Rodrigo Duterte suspending its operation, according to the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG)-Davao.
DILG-Davao Director Alex Roldan said in a press conference that Duterte's basis for the suspension of e-sabong was the survey conducted by their office nationwide.
Roldan said six out of 10 individuals who participated in the survey want a stop to the “e-sabong.”
"Ang decision sa President (The President’s decision) is not just a simple decision. It was a guided decision. It was based on the result of our survey on what is the feeling and impression of the people in e-sabong," he said during the AFP-PNP Press Conference on Wednesday, May 4.
Among the factors include the social problems that e-sabong brings, and its major impact on the country.
DILG Secretary Eduardo Año, in a SunStar Philippines report, said that in an online survey conducted from April 19 to 20, 62 percent out of the total 8,463 respondents voted against e-sabong operations, while 34 percent want it to continue but with tighter regulation, and only four percent expressed full support to it.
He said the respondents were persons engaged in e-sabong, whether they are agents, employees, bettors or players, and non-participants or non-players but related to or acquainted with the said individuals across the country.
Meanwhile, Roldan said that suspension of e-sabong will cause a P640 million revenue loss, but he said the losses are comparable to the problems it caused.
“We are exposing our children, so, that is the big problem, the social effect of that, and I believe they intended it because we are concerned of social stability, that is one of the problems that they have seen, (there) many, including children that are involved in betting on e-sabong,” he said.
“I personally believe that the president is right, it’s not just about revenue generation it is about stabilizing our society,” he added.
Roldan also said that all ordinances in the country, allowing the operation of esabong in their territorial jurisdiction, will be overtaken by the President's mandate.
The 19th Davao City Council, in 2021, passed an ordinance allowing the operation of e-sabong in the city.
E-sabong has also taken a toll on the image of the PNP after several policemen were either tagged in the cases of missing sabungeros or have been involved in illegal activities due to their gambling addiction.
Davao City Police Office (DCPO) Director Alberto Lupaz revealed that five police personnel were reportedly involved in online sabong in far-flung areas in the city.
He also ordered a random inspection of their personnel’s cellphones in a bid to stop cops from engaging in online cockfight betting.
Philippine National Police Chief Dionardo Carlos previously issued a directive against police personnel engaging in online cockfighting. (Ailene Buntilao, DNSC Intern/With RGL)