LAWMAKERS on Monday sought a congressional probe into the attack on Resorts World Manila that killed 38 people.
Reps. Gus Tambunting of Parañaque City, Rodolfo Albano III of Isabela, Ben Evardone of Eastern Samar, Harry Roque of the Kabayan party-list, and Lito Atienza of Buhay party-list said Resort World’s management had a lot of explaining to do in terms of security and other matters pertaining to the safety of its clients.
Tambunting, head of the House committee on games and amusements, said he would initiate the congressional probe.
“The public deserves to know what happened in this incident,” Tambunting said.
“I will file a resolution seeking a congressional investigation on how to improve the security in our casinos.”
In other developments:
• Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. said Monday it will conduct a separate investigation into the possible lapses in Resorts World Manila’s response to the deadly attack on Friday in which a gunman torched gambling tables and then locked himself in a room, set fire to himself and then shot himself.
“From the footage, there seem to be a lot of lack of security measures and competence among security personnel of Resorts World,” Pagcor chairwoman Andrea Domingo said.
“We will look into that and also on how they handle other crisis situations.
• The police are holding a series of meetings and seminars with the heads of security of business establishments in the wake of the attack at Resorts World Manila.
On Monday, officials and members of the Southern Police District and National Capital Region Police Office met with the security managers of the major locators and companies in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City to discuss how to improve security measures and public safety at their establishments.
SPD chief Tomas Apolinario said the close-door discussion held at the SM Aura Corp. Building was sponsored by the Bases Conversion and Development Authority. He said one of the issues discussed was the security update on terrorism.
“Another meeting is scheduled on Wednesday at 9 a.m. Terrorism security updates will be discussed,” he said.
Tambunting said the congressional probe could possibly be a joint investigation between his committee and the House committee on public order and safety.
Albano said he was saddened by the fact that the management of Resorts World failed to save the lives of its clients and employees .
“A lot of people died, lots of issues on security must be answered by the RWM management,” Albano, majority leader for the House of Representatives’ contingent to the Commission on Appointments, said.
Evardone, chairman of the House committee on banks and financial intermediaries, shared his views: “I support the Congress probe. The incident shows a lot of issues to be addressed from security protocols, building structures, and most importantly the response of our law enforcement agencies.”
Roque, of the House minority bloc, said he would be interested in “fire regulations, the role of local government units and disaster preparedness.”
Atienza said Pagcor, if warranted, must immediately suspend or cancel the permit to operate of RWM pending the results of the police investigation into Friday’s attack.
Pagcor should immediately suspend Resorts World Manila’spermit to operate while we await the results of the investigation,” Atienza, a deputy minority leader, said.
He said someone must be made accountable for the tragedy.
“The CCTV footage showed the security guards scampering away instead of controlling the armed intruder. They can be very strict and even rude to ordinary casino-goers but when it came to this lone gunman, they were the first to flee,” Atienza said. With Sandy Araneta and Joel E. Zurbano