The Legislative Assembly Of Macau is currently considering whether to pass updated electoral rules that would ban casino operators from playing any role in future campaigns.
According to a report from the local Teledifusao De Macau radio and television broadcaster, the proposed measures would prohibit gambling concessionaires from “directly or indirectly intervening in an electoral campaign” or taking any actions that “somehow benefit or harm one candidacy over others”.
The broadcaster reported that casino operators have long been accused of using their influence for electoral purposes. In 2009, the Gaming Inspection And Coordination Bureau regulator issue a warning to Sociedade De Jogos De Macau after several of its dealers were seen wearing shirts supporting the Legislative Assembly candidacy of director Angela Leong, who is the fourth wife of company owner Stanley Ho, while working.
That same year, local Melco Crown Entertainment employees received e-mails from the company soliciting support for Wong Seng Hong, a consultant for the company that served as Leong’s number-two.
Casino operators were moreover criticized during the local elections of 2013 for allegedly using their own shuttle buses to carry staff to the polls.