Political will is best weapon vs jueteng, says young Angara

September 27, 2010 9:51 am 

BALER, Aurora, Sept. 26 — Strong political will has made this province, the youngest and smallest in Central Luzon free from the evils of jueteng and other forms of illegal gambling.

Aurora Rep. Juan Edgardo Angara said political will on the part of Aurora’s leaders has weakened the foundations for jueteng to take root in the province.

“Yes, I think that (political will) is a big part,” said Angara when asked if political will played a key role in keeping the province the only jueteng-free province in Central Luzon.

Angara issued his comment after Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago commended the congressman’s aunt, Gov. Bellaflor Angara-Castillo for rendering jueteng irrelevant in the province.

“There is no jueteng to speak of in Aurora and that’s a tribute to Governor Angara-Castillo,” Santiago said in her privilege speech last Wednesday.

During the same privilege speech, Santiago named the top jueteng operators in the country, including Charlie “Atong” Ang and Rodolfo “Bong” Pineda.

She said Pineda operates in Nueva Ecija, Bulacan, Bataan and Angeles City, with collective daily revenues of P26 million.

Angara said retired Archbishop Oscar Cruz hit the nail right on the head when he said jueteng stands on two legs, the police and the politicians.

Angara-Castillo said the Angaras abhor all forms of gambling in the province, including lotteng and casino operations.

She said she was gratified by Santiago’s acknowledgment of their family’s efforts to maintain the province’s jueteng-free status.

Congressman Angara, however, said it is up to authorities to look into the Aurora model on how to cleanse the various provinces of jueteng operations.

”It’s really up to the authorities to make Aurora a role model because Aurora is not your typical province that it has a relatively small population.

“They would have to take into account factors like culture of a place, alternative livelihood among others,” he said. (PNA)

LDV/zst/MEG/ps

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