Friday, June 03, 2005

NR0602:PNP can't beat jueteng bcause it doen't really want to

Mula sa Tanggapan ni Anakpawis Rep. Crispin Beltran
News Release June 2, 2005
House of Representatives, South Wing Rm 602
931-6615 Ina Alleco R. Silverio,Chief of Staff
Cellphone number 09213907362

PNP's powerlessness in fighting jueteng because of pro-jueteng orientation among higher-ups; DOJ only doing a pantomime of going after jueteng lords - Rep. Beltran

"For a change, the Philippine National Police is admitting the truth that it's inutile in the fight against jueteng and, by extension, the PNP exposed its own previous lies that it was on top of the jueteng situation. Given this admission, however, the PNP is already washing its hand of its responsibility to put an end to the illegal numbers game and round up the gambling lords that run the syndicates," he said.

This was the comment today of Anakpawis Representative Crispin Beltran regarding the admission of PNP Director General Arturo Lomibao that the PNP is powerless to stop jueteng.

"We knew that all along. But this supposed 'powerlessness' in fighting jueteng is not so much because the PNP lacks the manpower or the skills, but because the higher-ups in the institution are not genuinely determined to capture any bigtime gambling lords, including the jueteng masterminds and protection-money collectors," he said. "Lomibao should qualify his admission because in truth, there are still PNP officers, men and women who have integrity and are honestly doing their best to fight jueteng. The problem lies with the higher-ups and the ranking officers in the PNP, many of whom are alleged to be on the payroll of jueteng lords and ensure the number game's proliferation and smooth operations in the provinces."

The veteran labor leader turned lawmaker also pointed out that even Lomibao is being suspected of involvement in jueteng, not as a bettor, but as a syndicate protector. "The credibility of the very people tasked to put an end to the gambling network is even questionable - so it's not surprising that the campaign to put an end to jueteng is just going around in circles. The fact is this: it was only the persistence of staunch ant-gambling and anti-corruption advocates such as Archbishop Oscar Cruz and their relentless ventilation of the issue that's forced the PNP and the Macapagal-Arroyo administration to take action againt jueteng. Otherwise, it will be status quo: the jueteng lords will continue to build their underground gambling empire and the PNP will make occasional but half-hearted raids on jueteng dens just to project an image that it's doing its job."

In the meantime, the activist solon said that Malacanang's go-signal to the Department of Justice and secretary Raul Gonzales to go after those being implicated in the senate jueteng inquiry was just for show.

"The DOJ and secretary Gonzales can't be relied on to go after the individuals being named in the senate inquiry, especially if it's the likes of First Gentleman Mike Arroyo, the president's eldest son Rep, Mikey Arroyo, and the president's brother-in-law Rep. Ignacio Arroyo. "Sec. Gonzales has already proven in his previous statements and actions that he is on the side of the members of the presidential family when it comes to this issue. The DOJ will only be conducting an elaborate pantomime if it actually takes steps to go after the members of the First Family. What's certain is that Sec. Gonzales will focus on the small fry and leave the big alone," he concluded.#


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