Resorts World ready to reopen casino, but Pagcor prepping compliance checklist first

June 21, 2017 - 2:37 PM
RWM torching gaming table
Surveillance video image of Jessie Javier Carlos torching a gaming table at the casino of the Resorts World Manila.

MANILA, Philippines – Barely a month after a shooting and burning incident that killed 37 persons, Resorts World Manila has told authorities it is ready to resume its casino operations.

Andrea Domingo, chairperson of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor), told lawmakers on Wednesday that Resorts World’s president, Kingson Sian, has asked the regulatory body to lift the suspension it imposed on its license.

However, Domingo said Pagcor will issue first a checklist “for a secure and safe environment,” for the casino-hotel operator to follow, before further action from the regulator.

Immediately after the incident on June 2, Pagcor served Resorts World a cease and desist order for all its gaming operations. Domingo had said the order will be in effect “pending investigation and final determination” by Pagcor of the casino operator’s liability for the incident and “compliance with all security, safety and gaming operations requirements.”

At the resumption of the House inquiry on the incident, Domingo also said that Resorts World informed her that it would no longer use the second floor of the casino-hotel when it reopens. It was on the second floor where all of the victims were found dead from suffocation. The gunman, after firing shots apparently to scare people, then torched gaming tables and slot machines, causing almost the entire second floor to be burned.

“They informed us they are not going to use the second floor anymore for casino operations,” Domingo said Wednesday.

She said Pagcor will release a checklist “for a secure and safe environment,” which Resorts World should comply with before they can operate anew.

Meanwhile, on questioning by Quirino Rep. Dakila Cua, Sian said that around P300 million worth of casino chips are unaccounted for following the incident. Police are also in possession of two bags of chips worth millions recovered from the gunman.