Sen. Christopher “Bong” Go said the government must prioritize maintaining peace and order, amid reports of rampant crimes related to Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGO).
He stressed that law enforcement authorities should continue stepping up their efforts to crack down on reported crimes, particularly those linked to POGO.
He said the government must carefully weigh the advantages and disadvantages of POGO operations in the country. However, he pointed out that peace and order must come first.
Earlier, he expressed concern over recent reports of abduction and kidnappings in the country. He urged the government to maintain a tougher stance against criminality.
Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs chair Sen. Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa raised the issue of recent incidents of kidnappings in various parts of the country, notably those involving women and Filipino-Chinese.
In response to the reports, the Department of the Interior and Local Government and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) organized an operation that allowed them to close down illegal offshore gaming activities in Angeles City, Pampanga.
During the operation, over 40 foreign workers were saved. The aforementioned workers were allegedly coerced into performing labor for the company.
Recently, Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri urged balancing the social costs of POGOs in relation to their financial contribution to the government.