The Philippines’ president, Rodrigo Duterte, has ordered the country’s gaming regulator, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp (Pagcor), to implement strictly an existing ban on government officials entering casinos, reported news website Politiko.
Presidential Decree No. 1067-B prohibits government officials and members of the Philippine Armed Forces and the Philippine National Police from entering casinos. Under the terms of the decree, employees of agencies that are directly involved with government operations are also barred from entering and gambling at casinos.
Other social groups mentioned in the decree as being excluded from casinos are people under 21 years of age, or students of any school, college or university in the Philippines.
“I do not want people in the government entering the casino. You are in the government with a measly income and yet you’ll be seen in a casino?” read Mr Duterte’s transcript, quoted by the news website.
Mr Duterte also wants spouses and children of government officials to be included in the casino ban, Politiko reported.
On June 30, at his first cabinet meeting after being sworn in, Mr Duterte vowed to stop the proliferation of online gambling in the Philippines.
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"The [Macau] government has a lead in this subject in regards to what should be done after the [gaming] concessions expire. We will be first listening to what the government will say”
Ambrose So Shu Fai
Vice-chairman and chief executive at Macau casino operator SJM Holdings