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80 Percent of Online Gambling Players Are Lower Middle Class, Says Minister

14 June 2024 19:40 WIB

TEMPO.CO, JakartaIndonesia is under a state of emergency regarding online gambling. Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs, Hadi Tjahjanto, said that about 80 percent of online gamblers in the country come from the lower middle class.

“Data shows that [the majority of] online gamblers are middle to lower-class people,” Hadi said in a statement quoted on Friday, June 14.

According to him, most of them made deposits of Rp100,000 to Rp200,000. He expressed concern for many victims of the illicit practice. “We ask for your prayers to eradicate online gambling at its roots,” he said.

Additionally, the Financial Transaction Reports and Analysis Center (PPATK) reported that about 2.3 million online gamblers are low-income people. The total turnover of gambling money in cyberspace reached Rp327 trillion in 2023.

About 63 percent of the figure came from the cumulative turnover of transactions since 2017, which amounted to Rp517 trillion. Meanwhile, in the first three months of 2024, the turnover amounted to Rp100 trillion.

The government has taken measures to eradicate online gambling. In 2023, the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (Kominfo) shut down 937,103 websites, applications, and internet protocols affiliated with the illegal practice. From November 2023 to May 2024, the ministry blocked 20,241 gambling-related keywords on Google.

Hadi also said that at least 5,000 bank accounts involved in online gambling were blocked. Unfortunately, these efforts came to no avail.

Recently, the government set up a task force consisting of ministries and state institutions, including the Indonesian Military (TNI) and the National Police. “The government is serious about combating online gambling. The online gambling task force will soon be formed, which we hope can accelerate the eradication of online gambling,” President Joko Jokowi Widodo said on Wednesday, June 12.

DANIEL A. FAJRI

Editor’s Choice: Indonesian Minister Says Online Gambling Threatens National Resilience

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