Ugandan government will no longer issue or renew licences for sports betting firms, the country’s Finance minister David Bahati has disclosed.
Bahati said President Museveni gave the directive due to what he perceives as negative impact the betting craze is having on the youthful population.
“We have received a directive from President Museveni to stop licensing sports betting, gaming and gambling companies. The President has now directed the board which has been regulating them….
Business analysts will certainly not agree with a government trying to woo investors when it still dictates the morality of business in a supposed capitalistic economy. The question is, is there some form of morality in business for African leaders? As Bahati noted, the church leaders are happy.
From now onwards, no new companies are going to be licensed. Those which are already registered, no renewal of licences when they expire,” Bahati told a church congregation at Rugarama Hill in Kabale town on Sunday.
He said this at the closure of a four-day conference where he represented the President as chief guest. The Minister maintained that church leaders are in support of the new policy and can now rejoice because “their prayers have been answered."
A communist capitalistic economy is what is playing out here. Government wants to set the standard, but it can't afford not to allow the economy run. It will certainly run the risk of investor scepticism. Not in fact, when it needs China badly.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Finance’s spokesman, Jim Mugunga, said he was not aware of the directive but added that since it was communicated by a minister, he cannot doubt it.
“I don’t know but since it was said by a minister, quote him. That’s good news,” Mugunga said.
Bahati also said Museveni has also promised to table the Bill on qualifications of religious leaders before Cabinet for discussion and later consult the clergy.
In his speech read for him by Bahati, the President commended Anglican Kigezi Diocese Bishop George Bagamuhunda and his Catholic counterpart of Kabale Diocese, Rt Rev Callist Rubaramira, for championing unity among Christians in Kigezi region.
“We thank Bishop Bagamuhunda for being transparent while handling church affairs, besides being developmental and we urge all Christians and church leaders to be faithful and trustworthy,” Bahati said.
Header Image Credit: theugandan.com.ug