STO. TOMAS— Secretary Antonio Villar Jr. of the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) chair has criticized the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) for their apparent failure to stop jueteng operations in the country.
Villar said the clampdown on the illegal numbers game appears “only superficial with lowly police chiefs from small towns used as sacrificial lambs”.
“Why not swoop down on big cities? Are the DILG and the PNP afraid of the officials in these local governments who have the right connections and the big collections (in jueteng)?” Villar asked.
He added that the power to stop jueteng lies in the hands of the mayors.
“It only takes one order from the chief executive to stop it, without any fear or favor, then it would immediately stop,” Villar said.
Meanwhile, Negros Occidental Rep. Alberto Benitez warned that jueteng operations across the country have began to proliferate anew because revenues of congressmen and mayors from public works have dramatically decreased owing to new bidding policies adopted by the Department of Public Works.
He said jueteng offers a convenient source for “unexplained revenues” to replace lost revenues from public works projects.
FOCUS ON DRUGS
At the same time, Villar also urged his fellow government officials, especially the elected leaders, to focus on the campaign against illegal drugs, which is more destructive than jueteng.
“Drugs destroys the future of a person while jueteng enriches the pockets of some officials,” he said.
He added that many of the crimes committed around the country are drug-related.—Eva Visperas