Online gambling has no place in Pasig City and Mayor Vico Sotto has given them an ultimatum to pack up and ship out within one year.
Sotto was particularly irked by a report that a mother pawned away her child due to her addiction to gambling.
Under Ordinance 55 signed by Sotto, online gambling establishments in the city have one year to shut down their operations or face prosecution
“Ordinance 55, s-22. Existing online gambling establishments in Pasig have one year (2023) to wind up operations,” Sotto said in a tweet with an attached copy of the ordinance.
Sotto said new online gambling establishments including Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGOs) will not be granted permits.
“While we have seen the social ills of these forms of gambling (have you heard about a mother who pawned her child? That’s not all. I take it as a personal insult when there are “alleged” offers of bribes every permit renewal season. If it is legitimate, then why is a bribe needed?” Sotto noted.
Signed by the city council on December 15, Ordinance 55 Series of 2022 took effect immediately.
The ordinance disallowed the operations, applications, and approval of licenses to operate online games of chance in the city, and sets a one-year period for the cessation of operations of listed operating establishments.
These games include online casinos, e-games, online sabong, e-bingo outlets, online poker, computer gaming stations.
The ordinance also covered the operations of service providers of technical support to these games.
“Any person, natural or juridical, who is found liable for violating this Ordinance shall be fined in the amount of P5,000 or an imprisonment for a period of one year, or both in the discretion of the court,” the ordinance stated.