Now it can be openly and publicly told what was probably already known before but remain unsaid and/or underestimated. There was strong and solid reason behind the fact that all the post-Martial Law administrations in the past shamelessly danced with the Jueteng Lords. Now, there is more forceful and cogent cause why even the present administration – with anti-corruption and pro integrity as its loud and repeated battle cry – expressly and officially declared that eradicating jueteng was not and remains not a “priority”. And as a matter of course, much less does the PNP together with local public Officials look at neutralizing Jueteng as anything relevant. In fact, recently a former President at that, fervently and loudly proclaimed that Jueteng should be “legalized” – in the spirit of the saying that if you cannot lick ‘ em, then join ‘em. Simple yet devoid of principle, and wherefore ethically flat broke.
If by itself then, Jueteng was not only a national shame but also fearsome social cancer, very much more it is during these times since Small Time Lottery (STL) became its intimate buddy, its bosom partner – making themselves an awesome and fearful paring. In case there are people who are still unaware of it or who miss the sinister significance and foreboding consequences of the JUETENG – STL TANDEM, let them know the following on-the-ground realities.
There is such a specially forceful pairing between the two in the sense that STL is used as a cover-up of Jueteng which is like a giant octopus with its huge tentacles in powerful grip practically the whole Country as a whole. Furthermore, it is a categorical certainty that the pairing is under the command of exactly the same long operating Jueteng Lords themselves. And as a deadly matter of course, STL uses the Jueteng hierarchical structure itself, giving payolas to the same protectors in the persons of infamous local public Officials and PNP authorities – who thus cannot but vow low and well before their said beneficiaries.
Conclusions: First, the Jueteng – STL tandem makes and unmakes local and regional politicians by using - - releasing or withholding - -its practically inexhaustible gambling funds for political purposes. Second, blessed are those politicians who enjoy the favor and support of the operators of the Jueteng-STL tandem, and damned are those who cross them in one way or another. Third, the same Jueteng-STL tandem has slowly but surely become a formidable political force.
It then become perfectly understandable that even the incumbent administration that is supposedly the incarnation of honor and probity honor, does not have vanishing Jueteng from the face of the land, as a “priority”. This will be courting political disaster – specially so during election times. How sad yet how true!
11 AUGUST 2010