SA government to follow ‘nights only' English lead
With the future of online gambling regulation still unclear in South Africa the government's latest move is designed to restrict gambling advertisements in general on television and movie screens to night time viewing. In doing so the Department of Trade and Industry appears to be following the British example.
The DTI this week proposed changes to the National Gambling Act that impose restrictions similar to those governing liquor advertising. It is not clear how print media will be addressed.
DTI spokesperson Zodwa Ntuli said one of the proposals is for gambling advertising on television only to be broadcast at night between 8pm and 6am. She revealed that there are also provisions that will impose restraints on sports and other sponsorships by gambling companies.
“We have published this [proposed] regulation for public comment and we would like the stakeholders, especially in the industry, to give us their views,” she said, adding that interested parties have a month to make submissions or object to the government’s proposals.
The South African government has spent years mulling over the pros and cons of legalising and regulating online gambling in a project that has involved extensive research, political debate and consultation with a wide range of parties. The results of the most recent review are currently awaited, but in the meantime a Gauteng high court has ruled that internet gambling is presently illegal, a finding challenged on appeal by Casino Enterprises, an operator in neighbouring wazilad the Swaziland.