Duterte denies knowing about planned Boracay casino
MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte denied he knew about plans to construct a casino in Boracay.
The planned casino angered netizens and critics who claimed it was proof that the government is not sincere in efforts to protect the popular tourist destination.
"Walang plano diyang casino-casino. Tama na iyan kasi sobra na. May casino dito, casino doon," Duterte said in a press conference on Monday, April 9, before leaving for China.
(There are no plans for a casino. Let's stop it because it's too much. There's a casino here, casino there.)
For the President, Boracay should be a farmers' island instead.
"Consider Boracay a land reform area. I will give it to the farmers, to the Filipinos first," he said.
"I will issue a proclamation. Lahat 'yan, lahat (all of the lands), agricultural," he added.
Duterte said that, according to the law, Boracay is mostly comprised of agricultural or forest land.
"The law says it is forest, agricultural. Why would I deviate from that?" he said.
"It's going to be a land reform area for the Filipinos. If you want to build something there, they can build a floating –" he said.
Boracay's 6-month closure to tourists begins on April 26. (READ: Is the government prepared for Boracay's closure?) – Rappler.com
In these changing times, courage and clarity become even more important.
Take discussions to the next level with Rappler PLUS — your platform for deeper insights, closer collaboration, and meaningful action.
Sign up today and access exclusive content, events, and workshops curated especially for those who crave clarity and collaboration in an intelligent, action-oriented community.
As a bonus, we’re also giving a free 1-year Booky Prime membership for the next 200 subscribers.
You can also support Rappler without a PLUS membership. Help us stay free and independent by making a donation: https://www.rappler.com/crowdfunding. Every contribution counts.