CDC to strengthen security measures

The Clark Development Corporation (CDC) spearheaded the first Clark Security Advisory Council Meeting on June 9 in a bid to strengthen security measures.

“We invited them (law enforcement agencies and PAGCOR) to form an advisory council to Clark, since geographically, they operate within Clark. We learned our lesson that the coordination must be strengthened among us because one finding of one agency should be pushed forward by another agency, and it is only within a very strong coordination that we will be able to address more effectively the problems that threaten security,” said Atty. Agnes VST Devanadera, CDC president and CEO

“Now we know who is doing what, and we are also trying to simplify the processes; we are strengthening, for example, the visa issuance parameters for the issuance of the visa, which is a very substantial outcome of the meeting of the Clark Security Advisory Council,” she said. 

“The parameters have been reviewed, and we have recommendations. Of course, we aim to ensure ease of doing business within the Freeport Zone, which is why we strive to process applications quickly. However, we have learned our lessons that there have been abuses, and that’s why we are tightening the measures,” Atty. Devanadera added.

The Department of Justice (DOJ), Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT), Bureau of Immigration (BI), National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Philippine National Police Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP-ACG), Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR), Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), and Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) were among the agencies that participated in the Council meeting.

To ensure a unified approach, CDC will develop a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) among the participating agencies. This MOA will serve as a framework for inter-agency cooperation, enhancing the effectiveness of the Clark Security Advisory Council.

“When one agency completes its work, it often leads to the beginning of work for another agency. This seamless workflow is a direct result of our collaborative efforts during this initial meeting,” she said.

She also expressed her appreciation for the dedication and commitment of the various agencies involved, highlighting in particular the ongoing efforts to repatriate victims of human trafficking and the increased emphasis on addressing violations related to the Sun Valley Clark Hub Corporation.

“I am very proud to say that the different agencies have been doing their work,” Atty. Devanadera said.

Atty. Devanadera said the management recommended to the Board to suspend the acceptance and processing of POGO operations as a business until the CDC can ensure effective monitoring.

Furthermore, Atty. Jessa Fernandez, the assistant vice president for the Offshore Gaming and Licensing Department at PAGCOR, provided additional insights. She informed the body that PAGCOR is currently undergoing a “major business restructuring,” which involves a review of the policies governing POGO operations.

As a result of these developments, CDC’s future actions will likewise be guided by the new policies, ensuring a coordinated approach towards POGO operations.