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Okada Manila bank accounts frozen; growth, plans hang in the balance

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By THEPHILBIZNEWS STAFF

With still unsettled Intra-corporate disputes between the Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment Inc. (TRLEI) and Kazuo Okada’s group, Okada Manila’s bank accounts have been frozen and inevitably casts doubt on its operational stability after its cage money runs dry. 

In the statement sent to THEPHILBIZNEWS by the Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment Inc. (TRLEI), its legal counsel Atty. Estrella Elamparo revealed that BDO Unibank (BDO), Asia United Bank (AUB) and Union Bank of the Philippines decided to freeze the accounts of Okada Manila due to the ongoing intra-corporate dispute in the operator of Okada Manila. 

With the status quo ante order (SQAO), banks have become more prudent and cautious in dealing with the financial requirements of Okada Manila. 

Duly informed of the SQAO, BDO required the legitimate TRLEI board led by Hajime Tokuda and Byron Yip, and the invalidly constituted board of Kazuo Okada led by Antonio “Tonyboy” Cojuangco and Dindo Espeleta to sign an agreement to disburse the salaries of the employees of Okada Manila. 

“Despite being on the right side of the law, the legitimate board of TRLEI decided to draft and sign the agreement, understanding that the welfare of the employees is at stake. However, the camp of Kazuo Okada was not keen on signing the agreement, imposing unreasonable conditions,” said Elamparo, a senior partner at TRLEI’s legal counsel Divina Law. 

The Kazuo Group insisted that they will never sign any agreement which bears the signature of Tokuda. 

The Kazuo Group’s decision and hard stance against signing the agreement forced the banks to file interpleader cases, asking the court to require both parties to interplead between themselves.

Elamparo said Okada Manila may choose to use the “cage money” or the revenues generated from the operations of the casino and hotel to fund the operations and the salaries of Okada Manila’s employees. 

However, those funds can only go so far and are expected to run dry soon. 

“The winds of change that will blow at Okada Manila reeks of disaster and misfortune. After their violent and illegal takeover, Okada Manila has no access to its bank accounts. We expect Okada Manila’s funds to dwindle in the coming weeks, putting not only guests at the losing end, but at the same time putting at risk its over 5,000 employees, many of whom rely on their salaries to meet their daily needs,” Elamparo said. 

Elamparo added that Kazuo and his group should be transparent to the establishment’s employees, as no bank or any financial facility will deal with Okada Manila until the legal cases have been resolved by the courts. 

Tiger Resort Asia Ltd. (TRAL) has forwarded to relevant agencies and partners a certification that puts on record that it does not recognize Kazuo Okada or any of his appointed board members as new management. 

With this, TRAL will not be in a position to infuse new capital to fund the daily operations and salaries of workers while legal proceedings are ongoing. 

“No bank will engage with an entity under an ownership dispute,” Elamparo said. “Once Okada Manila’s funds start to run dry, they will have problems dealing with the operations of the integrated casino resort.” 

Without capital to fund its daily operations, there is no clarity on how Okada Manila will continue to operate, much more implement Kazuo Okada’s recent pronouncements of growth and sustainability. 

“The legitimate board of TRLEI hopes that these issues will be resolved soon as they plan to move forward with its listing in NASDAQ through the merger with 26 Capital,” Elamparo said. 

For official news and updates on the listing plan in NASDAQ, kindly refer to the website of Universal Entertainment Corporation at https://www.universal-777.com/en/news/ 

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