Online gambling bill rejected in South Africa

The “remote gambling bill,” was bitterly criticised at South Africa’s National Assembly.

The Democratic Alliance proposed a law to regulate online gambling, but it was rejected in the National Assembly.

South Africa.- The “remote gambling bill”, introduced by the Democratic Alliance (DA) was rejected in the National Assembly. The proposed legislation contained ways of protecting the vulnerable and securing revenue currently lost to the fiscus.

DA MP Geordin Hill-Lewis said the House was making a mistake and would find in time that regulating online gambling is inevitable. He also noted that the amendments made in 2007, to the National Gambling Act were never enacted, adding to the long history of confusion regarding the rules around online gambling. “Regulation of the industry is the best way to protect the public,” Hill-Lewis expressed.

IFP MP Jan Esterhuizen, was the only supporter of the proposed bill. He commented that there were at least 2,000 illegal gambling operators and it made sense to legalise them. “Once regulated it can be better controlled and restricted with appropriate safety measures,” Esterhuizen said.

National Freedom Party MP Shaik Emam said gambling caused misery for the poorest of the poor, accusing the DA, of not caring for the poor. “People’s careers are destroyed as they resort to white collar crime to cover their losses. Children go to bed hungry,” he declared. Emam was applauded by the ANC, which also rejected the bill.