Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) General Manager Alexander “Mandirigma” Balutan on Friday lauded the gaming public for their continued support to Lotto and other digit games that earned P2,440,028,390 billion for the month of June.
Mandirigma said that 30 percent of the revenues automatically goes to the agency’s Charity Fund to pay for free hospitalization and medicines of indigent patients and other medical services such chemo and dialysis treatments, among others.
From January to May, data from the Charity Assistance Department (CAD) led by Assistant General Manager Larry Cedro shows that more than P3 billion of revenues from Lotto, Digit Games, Sweepstakes, and Small Town Lottery (STL) were already spent for almost 154,000 patients.
Mandirigma said that as revenues increase, the number of patients also increases because of the massive information and dissemination campaigns being implemented both in the traditional media and social media about PCSO’s charity programs.
“Out of all Lotto games, Ultra Lotto 6/58 had the highest earnings at P370.3 million, an increase of 67.20 percent compared with the same period last year. Followed by Mega Lotto 6/45 at P208.5M, Super Lotto 6/49 at P177.1M, Grand Lotto 6/55 at P176.5M, and Lotto 6/42 at P175.6M,” said Mandirigma.
As for digit games, 3-Digits had the highest earnings at P698 million, an increase of 39.46 percent compared with the same period last year. Followed by EZ2 at P564 million, 4-Digits at P42.4 million, and 6-Digits at P27.2 million.
“We would like to thank our gaming public for continuously patronizing our Lotto and digit games. As you can see, Lotto and digit games are really earning. They are the major contributor to PCSO revenues,” said Mandirigma.
The PCSO Charter, or RA 1169, particularly on revenue allocation, provides that the revenue of the PCSO shall be allocated to 55 percent for prize fund (payment of prizes), 30 percent for charity fund (various charity programs and service) and 15 percent as operating fund (maintenance and operating expenses).
“We must remember though that Lotto games are jackpot-driven so there are times when the revenues are decreasing because people are looking at how much the jackpot prize is. The higher the jackpot, the higher the sales,” explained Mandirigma.
Drawn every Tuesday, Friday, and Sunday, the Ultra Lotto 6/58 jackpot as of Friday is now at P227 million. It’s been more than four months since it was won by two bettors, one in Calamba, Laguna and the other one from Bustos, Bulacan sharing a prize of P331.9 million.
“Napakalaking bagay ng revenues natin para tulungan ang ating mga kabababayang kapus-palad at nangangailangan ng tulong medikal,” said Mandirigma.
Recently, President Rodrigo Duterte clarified his earlier pronouncement on jueteng to correct Sen. Panfilo Lacson who warned the police officers not to follow “illegal orders”, even from the President to stop the campaign against jueteng.
Duterte clarified that he never said he would allow “jueteng” to flourish in the country neither did he order the police to stop going after jueteng operators.
“I didn’t say that I’ll allow jueteng. I only said I will look for ways to handle this because the Lotto has not been useful. It was supposed to win over jueteng,” he said in a speech in Maasin City, Southern Leyte province.
“Probably he was referring to Small Town Lottery (STL) games, not Lotto,” said Mandirigma in response to the President’s clarification.
“But like I said, ito na sigurong STL ang legacy ng Pangulo para masawata ang illegal numbers game na ito. Ito ang pinaka-malaking jueteng or illegal numbers game killer. Hindi puwedeng kumita ito ng malaki kung merong illegal numbers game o gambling. Tumatabo nga ito ng malaki, nakaka-P2B a month,” said Mandirigma.
Instead of tolerating jueteng, Mandirigma said it’s better to support and strengthen STL.