Online sabong operations must be suspended the "soonest possible time" because it has already brought huge "social cost" to the country, aspiring president Vice President Leni Robredo said.
During the "Kandidatalks" presidentiables series on Friday, March 25, Robredo lamented the looming damage the operations of e-sabong have caused to individuals and their families.
"Paniniwala ko talaga kailangang i-suspend na ito (I believe this must be suspended) at the soonest possible time," the vice president said.
The presidential aspirant stressed that this activity is causing huge social costs in the country, which, she said, is not worth the money gained from it.
Robredo said there have been a lot of "horror stories" surrounding e-sabong that must finally be heard and addressed.
"Yung mga nawawala na e-sabongero, yung mga nagpakamatay, yung mga bata na nagkakaroon ng access sa gambling, yung mga pamilya na nag-aaway away, yung mga ipon ng mga OFWs na ang tagal iniwan ang pamilya para makapag ipon tapos because of e-sabong, naubos (The missing e-sabongeros, those who committed suicide, children who are gaining access to gambling, the overseas Filipino workers' saving that was only squandered in the end because of e-sabong)," she said.
"Ang dami na nating naririnig and kailangan natin 'tong pakinggan dahil hindi worth ng kahit na anong laki ng government revenue kung ang kapalit nito pagkasira ng ordinaryong Pilipino (We have heard enough and we need to address this now because the revenue the government is getting from this is not worth it if it will end up destroying the lives of ordinary people)," she added.
Robredo also said that an investigation must be done and ensure that safeguards will be in place in case operations will continue in the future.
"Ano ba yung mga safeguards na yung mga nangyayari ngayon worth ba yun ng pera na nakukuha ng pamahalaan? Para sa akin hindi, e (What are the safeguards that all that's happening now are worth the money the government is earning? For me, no)," Robredo said.
"Para sa akin pinakamahalaga na yung pag-aalaga hindi lang sa morality ng Pilipino pero pangangalaga sa kapakanan ng bawat pamilyang Pilipino yung inaasikaso natin (For me, the most important is not only upholding the morality of Filipinos but also the protection of the wellbeing of every Filipino family)," the lady official added.