ALIAGA, Nueva Ecija – A cockpit arena located amidst a residential zone and which had been closed since 2017 came under fire here from barangay and school officials after it opened and suddenly started to operate without their knowledge and consent.
They demanded that its operation immediately stopped and its business permit outrightly revoked by Mayor David Angelo R. Vargas.
Under fire was the cockpit arena being operated by Luisito Bumanlag, of the Bumanlag Games and Amusement Center in Bgy. Poblacion East 2.
Barangay officials from Pob. East 2 and Pob. East 1 headed by barangay captains Jun Martinez and Roman Perez have issued separate resolutions opposing the cockpit’s sudden start of operations which began here on Friday.
“Sapagkat ang pagbubukas muli ng sabungang ito ay labag sa umiiral na batas at hindi sang-ayon sa proseso na itinakda ng batas at walang kaukulang permiso o dokumentasyon mula sa Bgy. Poblacion East 2, mahigpit naming tinutulan ang muling pagbukas ng operasyon ng sabungang ito,” said a resolution duly signed by barangay captain Martinez and his eight-member council.
In their separate opposing resolution, Perez also said: “Sapagkat ang sabungang ito ay malapit sa mga bahayan at paaralan at ito ay makapagdudulot ng mapang-abalang ingay na makakaapekto sa mga gawain ng paaralan, gayundin sa mga residente dito sa amin.”
Roberto Calma, principal of the Aliaga National High School, which is located a few meters away from the cockpit, also demanded the immediate closure of said cockpit, citing the ill effects of gambling to their students, who are mostly minors.
A copy of the mayor’s permit of said cockpit arena with the signature of Mayor Vargas affixed on it showed it was allegedly issued on August 9.
It was learned that the cockpit was closed for operations upon orders from the previous administration headed by then-Mayor Gonzalo “BM” Moreno in 2017 due to alleged violation of Section 5(c) of Presidential Decree 449 (Cockfighting Law of 1974).