Press Release
February 23, 2020


Senator Richard J. Gordon stated Friday that the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, which he chairs, can anytime conduct an investigation on alleged corruptions and irregularities involving the Philippine offshore gaming operators (POGO) with the permission of the Committee on Women, Children, Family Relations and Gender Equality, that first opened the probe on the issue.

Gordon said, "I can always come in with all due respect to my fellow senators. I can motu proprio and say I've had enough, may nakikita akong malfeasance dito sa BI, sa Internal Revenue, sa PAGCOR. Nag-usap na kami ni Risa (Hontiveros). Sabi ko, 'When you're ready, papasok ang Blue Ribbon with your permission' dahil siya ang siyempre nag-iimbestiga diyan, siya ang nag-expose."

Gordon said that the Blue Ribbon is already researching on crimes and other issues linked to alleged irregularities with the operations of POGOs such as the issue on tax evasion and the sudden rise in the number of Chinese nationals in the Philippines.

"'Yung tina-tax sa kanila, napakaliit. Dapat five percent; ewan ko kung saan nanggagaling 'yung two percent. Wala naman kaming ginawa sa Kongreso na two percent lang ang ita-tax diyan. At saka uncontrolled 'yan; parang gripong pumapasok. December to January, ang pumasok, 530,000 (Chinese nationals). Hindi mo alam kung visa on arrival 'yon at magtou-tourist, at hindi natin ma-track down," he said.

Gordon added that the influx on Chinese workers causes higher property prices as some apartment and housing units, especially in subdivisions, are being leased to Chinese nationals for higher rent.

"Ang damage sa ating lipunan niyan, napakalaki. Hindi lang 'yung kulang 'yung binabayad niyan. Nadi-distort 'yung values natin at you suddenly have, ang dami-daming mga Chinese na pumapasok dito, sabi tourists; ngayon, maraming POGO," he said.

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