South African online gambling prohibition

South African online gambling prohibition

South African online gambling prohibition is being mocked by the country’s largest opposition party. This in light of the government preparing to vote on new gambling legislation. This as reported by Steven Stradbrooks at


On Wednesday, Ghaleb Cachalia, the Democratic Alliance (DA) party’s Shadow Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry issued a statement. In the statement he was mocking the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) for hatching a plan to “ban the internet to stop online gambling.”

Cachalia claims that Section 54 of the existing National Gambling Act ensures the nation’s gambling and betting industries are “not closed off to competition. However they are subject to normal market conditions”. The ANC’s proposed revisions to the Act would grant regulators new powers to punish online gambling operators and their customers.

Cachalia quoted DTI Minister Rob Davies’ 2016 comments about seizing the winnings of gamblers who wager with internationally licensed gambling sites. “We may not be able to stop you when you play the game, but when you win, we get you.”

Cachalia then contrasted Davies’ words with a quote by MacDonald Netshitenzhe, chief director of DTI’s Consumer and Corporate Regulation Division. They claimed “we can stop online gaming by banning the internet”. Cachalia called Netshitenzhe a “genius’ for making this observation.

Cachalia called online gambling “a thriving industry with a constantly growing number of fans”. He claims the DTI’s parliamentary committee had drafted a report with “a strong view”. He went on to say that any revisions to gambling laws “should look at gambling holistically, including online gambling.”

Comments submitted on the Act

Indeed, the comments submitted on the Act prior to its adoption by the DTI committee included a recommendation by regulators in the country’s largest gambling province (Gauteng). Also that the country’s online prohibition “has failed and it might be time to consider regulation of interactive gambling.”

Cachalia further trolled Davies by questioning his motivation for opposing online gambling liberalization. Cachalia qualified by claiming that he would “never make an allegation of dishonesty when a simple explanation of stupidity will suffice.” Cachalia closed by saying the DA “cannot support this bill.”

While Cachalia may have enjoyed his public slamming of Davies’ gambling stance, the truth is that the ANC holds a strong majority in the National Assembly and doesn’t require the DA’s support to approve the amended legislation.

DA members have on multiple occasions introduced legislation that would expand South Africa’s current gambling laws. This Law only permits online sports betting by domestic firms. And permits a more comprehensive full-spectrum online gambling market but these efforts have all died from lack of ANC support.

S.A. legislators adopt new streamlined Gambling Act

S.A. legislators adopt new streamlined Gambling Act

S.A. legislators adopt new streamlined Gambling Act. South Africa’s parliamentary committee on Trade and Industry reported that they had adopted the National Gambling Amendment Act 2018. However this was only after narrowing the Act’s focus to just three issues.

Committee chairperson Joanmarie Fubbs said legislators had decided to leave the more comprehensive Act which was proposed earlier this year. The reasoning behind reducing it to only three issues was to address the main challenges promptly.

The three issues in the Act are transferring regulatory oversight from the National Gambling Board to the new National Gambling Regulator. They also need to improve governance at the National Gambling Policy Council. There is also a need to broaden the National Central Electronic Monitoring System to monitor all modes of gambling activity.

Fubbs also said the committee decided to purge several “serious” issues from the final document. These issues are banning dog racing, regulating electronic bingo terminals and betting on lottery results. The cracking down on online gambling payments was also an issue that needed dealing with but “the time available never allowed for an effective interrogation.”

Fubbs said the issues that were purged from the revised Act would eventually resurface. The adoption of the revised Act “will pave the way for more comprehensive amendments to the gambling regulatory framework.”


South Africa currently permits online sports and race betting. Harsh new punishments against any international gambling operator without a local license or offering other online products, The government also plans to confiscate any winnings that local residents might collect from these unauthorized sites.

Some South African politicians have attempted to bring the country’s gambling market into the 21st century. But these efforts have failed to gain traction, in part due to heavy lobbying by the nation’s brick-and-mortar casino sector.

In comments submitted on the Act last month, gambling regulators in Gauteng claimed that the government wanted to maintain its online gambling restrictions. This was despite the “lack of capacity and appropriate skills” to enforce the ban. The Gauteng Gambling Board suggested online prohibition “has failed and maybe its time to consider regulation of interactive gambling.”

South Africa’s government could indeed reap significant revenue from expanding its online gambling options. However the DTI’s stated policy is that the “underlying objective of gambling regulation in SA is punter protection and not revenue collection.”

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The up and coming ICE Africa Convention will take place on October 24-25 at the Sandton Convention Centre in South Africa. The aim of this convention is to gives a big-picture view of the gambling industry in Africa. Each facet of the industry will also be examined in the conference’s microscope AFRICA segment. This will be done with real-world examples to showcase the customer journey, marketing, the move from retail to online and building a sustainable startup.

Grey Media Regional Network Coordinator Dele Odugbemi will talk about ‘Contextualising social media campaigns to African markets.’

Conversational Commerce Director Nick Bradshaw looks at the use of artificial intelligence-powered assistants in the hotel and gaming industries “. This is with the aim of increasing customer engagement.”

Integrated resort casinos will be discussed as ‘The ultimate retail experience.’ Speaking here are Sun International Chief Operating Officer Thabo Mosololi, Sense4Gaming owner Robert Brassai, and Magos Media CEO Petro Magos.

A case study on ‘the move from retail to online’ will be moderated by Global Gaming Company Director John Kamara, with speakers G-Bets Operations and Marketing Director William Reyneke, BetKing Nigeria co-founder Adekunle Adeniji, Hybrid Interaction Ltd. CEO Shahar Attias, and BtoBet Chairman Alessandro Fried.

‘The future of lottery in Africa’ will be moderated by Global Gaming’s Kamara, with Mozambique Gambling Board Gaming Inspector Felix Mukaxe, and Oxygen8 South Africa CEO Tony Smith speaking.

‘Affiliate marketing for the African operator’ will be moderated by Income Access Vice-President of Strategy Sarafina Wolde-Gabriel, with speakers Sun International Group Manager for Online Business Development Martin Sack, Cheki Odds Kenya Managing Director Dev Karia, BetOlimp Chief Marketing Officer Mark McGuinness, and Lotto & Lotto Foundation Communications Director Dennis Muigai.

‘Approaching the African ecosystem: Enhancing mobile payment solutions’ will be moderated by Global Gaming’s Kamara, with speakers SportyBet CEO Sudeep Dalamal Ramnani, Paystack co-founder and CEO Shola Akinlade, and a representative from Flutterwave.

The last microscopeAFRICA talk is ‘Seizing opportunity: Optimise your offering to take advantage of rise of mobile in-play betting,’ moderated by BetColony Chairman and CEO Lekan Saka. Speaking here are BestBet360 CEO Dolan Beuthin, Fortunebets Limited Chief Operating Officer Ifeanyi Osode, Playwin International Limited CEO Chinedu Oguike, and CEO Scott Canny.

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6th BiG Africa Supershow

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Eventus International who are taking charge of the 6th BiG Africa Supershow announced the preliminary agenda and prospective speakers for the event. The even at this stage is scheduled to take place November 5-6 at Emperors Palace in South Africa’s Gauteng/Johannesburg. The aim behind this event is for representatives from different branches of the gaming industry to gather under the same roof.

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The BiG Africa Supershow 2018 will combine the Betting & iGaming Africa Summit and the new Casino Marketing & Hospitality stream. Although the event will host two different group sessions, combined sessions will bring all delegates together. While breakaway sessions will be dedicated to particular fields such as sports betting, land based casinos, and casino hospitality.

Eventus International has been organizing Africa-specific gaming events and conferences for six years now. The idea is to provide industry professionals with relevant tools, ideas, and marketing strategies that will be effective in this growing market. Unlike Europe, effective techniques and strategies differ for each country in Africa. The conference strives to provide region-specific information for those delegates in attendance.

Regulation, Technology, and Responsible Gaming

Across various combined and breakaway sessions, the 6th BiG Africa Supershow will cover various topics dealing with the gaming regulation in Africa, possibilities of improving longevity through the implementation of responsible gambling measures, development of new technologies and their application in the African market, and much more.

In addition to the working part of the conference, attendees will also have plenty of opportunity for networking, especially during several official networking events scheduled across two days. It is worth noting the event is completely free to attend for all gaming professionals from South Africa.

Moving Western Cape Casinos

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Currently in draft form is the bill regarding moving Western Cape Casinos to another location. The intention has been brought about by the Western Cape government in South Africa and has met with condemnation.

The proposed legislation would enable the relocation of the casinos which would lead to a huge decline in gambling revenue, overall profits and of course job losses.

The bill would amend the Western Cape Gambling and Racing Act to permit the moving of existing casinos to other areas. Established Casinos located in five of the province’s district municipal regions hold a licence to operate a casino exclusively for a 10-year period. Unfortunately the exclusivity periods have now expired.

The plan now is to make casino licences available in Cape Town’s eastern suburbs and in Table Bay and Tygerberg. Anthony Leeming, CEO at Sun International is very concerned and said the arrival of competition close to his GrandWest Casino would have a negative impact.

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