Church claims victory over stoppage of STL operations in Leyte

THE Catholic Church has claimed victory in Eastern Visayas after the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office halted small-town lottery (STL) operations in the region due to “poor sales.”

Speaking on behalf of the Archdiocese of Palo, Father Amadeo Alvero related the “welcome development” to the church’s strong campaign against all forms of gambling.

“We have been using all the possible means in telling the people not to support STL even in our homilies during Masses” said Alvero, archdiocesan spokesman.

Zenaida Delantar, chief lottery officer of PCSO-8, said Ancor Bay, the sole operator of the STL in the Leyte province, opted not to renew its contract on December 31 last year.

According to her, poor revenue was the reason for the demise of the legal numbers game due which was only earning around P16,000 a month.

“It really can’t survive with that situation,” Delantar said.

Delantar also revealed that STL in Maasin City, Southern Leyte was no longer operating since September last year for the same reason. STL operations in said areas both started in May 2010.

The church official, meanwhile, said he is not at all surprised by the death of the numbers game because “people here are not really into gambling.”

“It’s really not part of our culture here. The fact that people did not support it is that they know that it’s not going to bring good to them,” Alvero said.

The PCSO official, however, clarified they are still open to applications for STL operations but doubt if there would be more applicants.

“It’s really not popular in our area so it might discourage some operators,” Delantar said. CBCP News

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