President Rodrigo Duterte has dismissed the order for the suspension of Small Town Lottery (STL) operations; however, certain conditions should be met.
On Thursday night, the Palace confirmed the order after it was announced by General Manager Royina Garma of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) on Facebook.
“Yes, the suspension will be lifted upon compliance (with) certain conditions,” Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a text message.
“Those compliant franchise holders will have to give three months’ deposit, those noncompliant will have to pay their arrears. There will be a waiver from suits. Franchise holders cannot sue,” he added.
The government will soon issue the rules and regulations of the reopening of the STL operations, according to Panelo.
“The effectivity will be after the publication of the implementing rules and regulations,” he said.
When the Palace official was asked if the dismissal recommendation of the suspension was written after the probe into the PCSO, he said, “Wait until the publication of the IRR on Monday.”
“Any violation of any of the conditions contained in the implementing rules and regulations will mean revocation of the license to operate the STL,” Panelo warned.
Conditions to operate
Meanwhile, in a video posted on the Facebook of PCSO, Garma enumerated the conditions in the resumption of STL operations:
1. The authorized agent corporations (AACs) must deposit with the PCSO a cash bond equivalent to three months of PCSO’s share in the guaranteed minimum monthly receipts (GMMRR) on top of their existing cash bonds.
2. Upon failure to timely and fully remit their GMMRR during the duration of their operations, the agency’s cash bond equivalent to three months of the PCSO’s share in the GMMRR shall be automatically forfeited in favor of PCSO without prejudice to the other remedies that may be exercised by the government.
3. Each AAC shall execute a written undertaking that it shall comply with its obligations under the STL agency agreement and will not institute any claims monetary or otherwise against the government and/or apply for temporary restraining order (TRO) or injunction from any court to prevent government from exercising its rights and prerogatives.
4. The STL agency agreement shall automatically be terminated upon violation of conditions of their franchise and/or any of the above conditions without prejudice to the other remedies that may be exercised by the government.
On July 26, the President ordered all the PCSO’s licensed games, including lotto, STL, Keno and Peryahan ng Bayan, to be suspended from operating.
Duterte mentioned the big time corruption in the agency, citing that government was not getting its rightful share from it.
However, he ordered the resumption of lotto operations days later, after investigators found no irregularities.