By Francois Rodgers, MPL, DA KZN Spokesperson on Finance:
THE DA in KZN calls on provincial Finance MEC, Belinda Scott to shut down all Electronic Bingo Terminal (EBT) Licence operators trading illegally in the province.
This follows numerous claims that some are still open for business and further allegations that certain operators are continuing to develop sites for gambling operations in spite of their licences not being issued in terms of the Gaming and Betting Act.
Towards the end of last year, the DA exposed the fact that the KZN Gaming and Betting Board had illegally issued EBT licences. This led to the suspension and dismissal of the board members by KZN Finance MEC, Belinda Scott.
Since then, no steps have been taken to remove these illegal licences.
The DA finds this incomprehensible. Not only does this send out a dangerous signal, it also has a severely negative impact on already impoverished communities in KZN.
In light of the above, the DA will submit a written parliamentary question to MEC Scott requesting a list of all gaming licenses issued by the previous board. Once we have established which licenses were illegally issued, we will ensure that the MEC takes the necessary steps to revoke all these licences.
The community of KZN have made it abundantly clear that they oppose the issue of gaming licences in community areas, particularly in shopping centres,
The DA is currently facilitating meetings to engage members of the community about the proposed Gaming and Betting Bill, due for public comment next week. We urge all interested parties to make take advantage of this opportunity.