Duterte stops Philippine sweepstakes office's lotteries, games

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte ordered an investigation into the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office on July 26, 2019. PHOTO: REUTERS

MANILA (BLOOMBERG) - President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the police and military to stop all lotteries and gaming activities run by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, accusing the agency of corruption.

"The ground is massive corruption involving all, even the courts," Duterte said in a speech posted on the presidential communication office's Facebook account on Friday (July 26).

Duterte ordered an investigation of the agency and said he won't honour any court orders to stop it.

The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, or PCSO, raises funds for health programmes and medical assistance through daily sweepstakes and lotteries.

In 2017, it raised 53 billion pesos (S$1.42 billion) from its games that included small-town lotteries, 34 per cent higher than a year earlier.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.