The phrase “almost zero” is uncertain, undetermined, unverifiable. It means it is not truly “zero”, and “almost” is not really true. Thus it is that “almost zero” is neither here nor there.
The claim that jueteng is almost zero in the country is contrary to facts. There is still jueteng in some provinces although less than before. Furthermore just like jueteng, there are still a good number of illegal numbers games going in certain places. Masiao, last two, loteng, letreng, bookies and the like are well and alive in some parts of the islands.
The claim that it is the present administration that made jueteng almost zero in the country for the longest time only means the following truths: One, that jueteng can be readily stopped. Two, that the Executive Department can stop jueteng if it likes to. Three, that jueteng thrives only when the government officials and the police authorities tolerate, promote or even protect it.
The claim that the incumbent administration was able to reduce jueteng to “almost zero” simple strengthens the belief all along that the rise and fall of illegal numbers games in the country simply rests on the actual “yes” or the simple “no” to jueteng on the part of those dutibound to stop them all.
Lest people misunderstand, it is not the choice of the administration to stop or not something illegal. It is its duty to do away with any and all illegal activities in the country. Eradicating jueteng and other illegal numbers games is but the obligation of government and the rightful expectations of the governed.
It has become markedly evident that jueteng in particular exploits millions of poor people, enriches the few of its cheating operators, corrupts willing government and police personnel.
Like narco-politics in other countries, there is jueteng politics in the Philippines. Jueteng payolas fund elections, buys protection, runs the government in more ways than one.
Otherwise, how come all well known jueteng lords in the country remain untouchable to these days? Otherwise, how come well identified jueteng operators in Luzon are strangely unseen, unheard, unconfronted?
14 August 2005