No doubt Makati City has become the “online casino capital in Asia” with its multi-billion dollar market, the Chinese clientele in mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia.
Although online gambling establishments are found in other major cities all over the country, they have mushroomed in Metro Manila’s premiere city, particularly in the Makati business district.
The problem is many of these chains of online gambling joints located in plush skyscrapers are illegally operated because they are not licensed by the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) through the First Cagayan Leisure and Resort Corporation or the Northern Cagayan Gaming and Amusement Corporation.
The unlicensed and, therefore, illegal establishments comprise up to 60 percent of the total online gaming firms in the country with the clandestine operations concentrated in Makati.
The government has lost millions of pesos in unpaid and uncollected taxes and dues supposedly generated by illegal online casinos.
We have been calling the attention of Makati acting Mayor Kid Peña and the Makati City Business Permits and Licensing Office (BPLO) regarding the proliferation and unabated operations of the illegal online casinos but, apparently, we’ve been given the runaround.
The following are but a few of the illegal online casinos with licenses from CEZA subsidiaries: Betsson Group which operates at the 14th floor of the Zuellig Bldg. in Paseo de Roxas Ave.; CG World Services, located at the 9th floor of the RCBC Towers on Gil Puyat Ave. (Buendia); Crowntech, 20th floor RCBC Towers; Novemix Corp., RCBC Towers; Gee Pacific Technology, 32nd floor, Robinson Summit Bldg., Ayala Ave.; Opus Gaming Ltd. 51st. floor, PBCom Bldg. Ayala Ave. Double Joy Ltd, Gil Puyat Ave.; and Goldrich GlobalGames, 16th Burgundy Tower, Gil Puyat Ave.
We wondered how these unlawful business activities resumed operations after being raided by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG), as well as the Bureau of Immigration (BI).
Guess what my undercover informants have gathered. A retarded, I mean a retired PNP official is said to be one of the protectors of these chains of illegal online gambling joints.
These erring establishments have been raided by immigration authorities because they have been a haven for undocumented aliens, who end up working as pseudo “call center agents.”
Of course, these hundreds of illegal aliens do not sell any tangible products or services, except for hooking up their clients to online casino games.
So, Makati City is not only the “capital of illegal online casino” but the “top haven for illegal alien workers,” as well.
2016 Polls: all about money?
As it now appears, the 2016 elections campaign will be dominated by wealthy, powerful traditional politicians or “trapos” and celebrities who have graduated from the entertainment world to politics. This elitist ruling class thrive on the mediocrity of the voting public, as well as the mainstream media.
More than 30 years after the rule of the much-demonized dictator Marcos, the Filipino people continue to suffer inequality, discrimination, injustice and poor quality of living.
Many of the candidates at the national and local levels are the same people who have failed to uplift the lives of the people, who let themselves to be duped by the glitter of money during elections.
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) should be able to discern “nuisance” candidates and set apart those potential new leaders who have a true heart for public service, unlike the usual “pork barrel-hungry” epal politicians.
For a truly meaningful change, the people deserve a wide choice of candidates who can offer tangible service and not only contrived promises and cold cash.
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