Gambling Regulation Bill In RSA Tabled

Regulation of Gambling in South Africa is a very odd thing. The latest attempt to implement a regulatory framework has been put forward by the main opposition party in Parliament which is unusual.

A gambling regulatory framework has been on hold since 2008 when it was first put forward. It would have made South Africa a world leader in regulating online games. You might scoff at the idea of South Africa being a world leader, but South Africans led the charge in developing Online Casino games.

The likes of Microgaming and many online casino operators have their origins in South Africa, so why is it so hard to get a gambling bill passed? Well, we have our thoughts on the matter.

ANC Corruption & misadministration

The end of the Mbeki administration brought about an absolute disaster in the form of the ANC Government led by Jacob Zuma. South Africans have watched on helplessly whilst the ANC led by Zuma has pillaged and deprived the country of billions of dollars, an even bigger amount if you measure it in rands.

The safety and well-being of South Africans playing at online gambling venues would not have been of importance to the administration. They were too busy pillaging Eskom and other state institutions to be worried about that small fry.

The Ramaphosa administration has also done nothing to enhance the reputation of the ANC. For the first time since 1994, the ANC might not achieve a majority in parliament which means the proposed Gambling Bill might have a chance of passing.

Why is a SA Gambling Bill Necessary?

Gambling Bills bring about regulation, in most countries regulation provides players with a minimum level of information and banking safety. It also ensures gambling venues are bound by a code of conduct that they have to adhere too. It prevents underage or illegal gaming and criminality.

We say most countries as South Africa as most citizens know is not most countries. An example is the South African Powerball draw that produced 20 winners of the main prize and 79 winners of the second-tier prize. The lottery is regulated in South Africa too. It does not seem to have prevented shenanigans from taking place though.

If the South African Gambling Bill does get through Parliament, those dealing with gambling operators mustn’t be tempted to dip their fingers in the honey jar. Regulatory boards in Sweden and the United Kingdom are scrutinised and we think that this should be the case in South Africa as well.

The last aspect that any Gambling Bill needs to be careful of is over-regulation and taxation. Currently, in some regulated markets, we have seen excessive taxation and regulation, which has meant the rise of black market gambling.

It essentially means that gambling venues will not offer their games in a region and that makes for less choice which means players have fewer licensed venues to select from. That in turn leads them to seek out better offers and unlicensed venues specialise in taking advantage of this.

We are all aware of the deep hole that the South African Government finds itself in in regards to its budget. Billions of Rands can be raised from a well-thought-out SA Gambling Bill and we hope that this is sorted out soon.

Gambling Regulation in South Africa
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