NPC | AL head says top officials are under gambling watch

Meeting of Macau deputies during the National People’s Congress in Beijing

The president of the Legislative Assembly (AL), Ho Iat Seng, revealed that the mainland government has a system which allows it to closely monitor the gambling habits of mainland civil servants in Macau’s casinos.

According to reports in the Hong Kong media, Ho, while in Beijing to take part in the annual legislature meetings, told the mainland media that some casinos have monitoring systems specifically designed to target mainland civil servants.

“Some people, the moment [they] sat down, received a phone call from high officials [from their] Danwei [consists of public service departments in mainland or even state-owned companies],” said Ho.

The AL president said that mainland principal officials using public money to gamble in Macau has its roots in the past, when Macau was less strict in their management of small casinos.

However, Ho claimed that the majority of the mainland’s principal officials have been sighted in the monitoring system in recent years. Consequently, the number of cases of the mainland’s principal officials using public money to gamble in Macau has been greatly reduced.

Ho noted that currently it is very difficult for employees of the mainland’s banking and finance industries to come to Macau to gamble.

Ho explained that the monitoring system consists of an “internal management method,” which ensures the relevant departments are immediately notified once a mainland civil servant enters a casino in Macau.

“Other countries in the world also pay attention to [their] principal officials who come [to Macau] to gamble,” said Ho.

Yesterday, Ho admitted that no reporting system exists between the mainland and Macau regarding such conduct, according to a report by TDM.

The AL president said that it is the mainland’s own monitoring technology that allows mainland authorities to know about their civil servants’ gambling activities in Macau.

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