MANILA, Philippines – Manila Barangay Bureau director Analyn Buan called local candidates former President Joseph Estrada and running mate Vice Mayor Isko Moreno “liars” as she denied that Mayor Alfredo Lim was behind the arrests of Moreno and 5 councilors over a bingo game.
In a press conference on Thursday, April 11, Buan said the mayor’s note that Moreno presented as supposed proof of a politically motivated arrest was dated January 26, almost a month before Moreno was arrested. She said it was very unlikely that Lim foresaw that Moreno would be holding bingo activities.
The marginal note and memo presented by Moreno, she added, show that it was a “general order” to take appropriate action to bingo activities.
“Pareho silang sinungaling ni Erap. Bagay talaga silang magsama (He and Erap are both liars. They complement each other.) Sabi nga (As the saying goes), birds of the same feather flock together,” Buan said.
Strictly speaking, Buan said, it wasn’t a new order–she has never allowed bingo activities since 2007 because the law prohibits it.
Section 1 of Presidential Decree 1602 of 1978 prescribes stiffer penalties on illegal gambling, penalizes persons who “directly or indirectly take part in any illegal or unauthorized activities or games,” which include bingo and other forms of lotteries.
Moreno: Arrest Buan, too
Reached for comment, Moreno said Buan should be made to explain then why her office granted a permit to the Community Chest Foundation on February 14 — which was also held after Lim signed the order prohibiting bingo games, and two days before Moreno’s bingo activities.
“Nagpabingo yun (Community Chest Foundation) ‘nung February 14, may bayad pa. Ang kinita nila ay P400,000. Kami walang bayad o taya (The Community Chest Foundation held a bingo game on Feb. 14, tickets were sold. They earned P400,000. Ours did not have any sale of tickets nor bets).”
“Now, for the sake of argument, sabi ni Lim before February 14, base sa order niya na hindi naman niya di-neny ay bawal ang bingo, bakit hindi niya hinuli si Buan (Lim said his order prohibiting bingo games was made before February 14. Why didn’t he have Buan arrested?)” he said.
Moreno said these were merely “palusot” (excuses). He stressed that he and 5 councilors were the only ones held while he claims, there were thousands who played bingo on Feb. 16.
Buan said her office approved the fund-raising activity of the Community Chest Foundation at the San Andres Complex because the group did not mention it would conduct online bingo activities.
In contrast, she said, “Yung ginawa ni Isko ay ilegal at bukod sa ‘di naman para sa charitable purposes ay nakakalikha ng istorbo sa kalsada (What Isko did was illegal and was not intended for charity; the bingo activity was nuisance in the road),” she said. – Rappler.com
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