Duterte Is Using The Philippine Police to Target Illegal Gambling After Drugs War

Posted on: September 15, 2016, 06:00h. 

Last updated on: September 15, 2016, 07:51h.

Duterte and Philippine police promise to target illegal gambling
Durerte Tactics: Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs has killed thousands through the use of vigilantes. Now he’s turning his attention to illegal gambling. (Image: Bullit Marquez/AP)

Philippine National Police (PNP) said this week that having “eliminated” the country’s illegal drug menace “six months ahead of schedule,” it will now turn its attention to illegal gambling.

Of course, if the country’s drugs problem has truly been eradicated, the PNP should not take all the credit. It’s had plenty of help from the populace. Over 3,000 Filipinos have been killed so far as part of President Rodrigo Duterte’s war of drugs in the two months since he was elected, and the PNP has only managed to kill about half of them.

The rest have been murdered by vigilantes inspired by Duterte’s violent rhetoric and the promise of impunity from prosecution. Duterte has declared criminals to be “legitimate targets of assassination” and once offered a reward to anyone who could “bring him the head” of a local gang leader.

“Do Your Duty”

“All of you who are into drugs, you sons of bitches, I will really kill you,” he said, as part of his election manifesto.

“If you know of any addicts, go ahead and kill them yourself as getting their parents to do it would be too painful,” he assured Filipinos everywhere.

“Do your duty, and if in the process you kill 1,000 persons because you were doing your duty, I will protect you,” he told police officers the day after he came to power.”

Filipinos engaged in the illegal gambling trade had better watch their backs. Speaking at a PNP conference this week, Chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa said that the days of those offering illicit gambling were numbered.

He was largely referring to operators of numbers rackets in the Leyte and Samar region of the country. But Dela Rosa also has his target aimed at the illegal cock-fighting rings off Tacloban City.

He warned members of the regional police force to refrain from protecting or engaging in the illegal activities targeted by President Rodrigo Duterte, or face the consequences.

New Online Gambling Regime

Duterte, who recently referred to the President of the United State as “the son of a whore,”  has already systematically dismantled the country’s online gaming “boutiques”, the largest chain of which was owned by Philweb. The firebrand president appears to have a particular dislike of Philweb’s owner, the billionaire Robert Ongpin, whom he has branded an “oligarch,” exactly the type of person he wants wiped off the face of the earth.

But the government’s gambling regulator, PAGCOR, recently announced that it was prepared to license “offshore” online gambling firms that targeted “non-locals.” And on Wednesday it said it would begin accepting “letters of intent” from foreign companies who might be interested.

Don’t all rush in at once, guys…