Government Delays Decision on South African Lotto Operator


national-lottery-2The South African government will not make an immediate decision about the new operator of the country’s national Lottery, and wants to review the selection process before a decision is made. This was announced by the Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies ahead of the months leading up to the expiration of the current operator, Gidani’s seven year license in May 2015.

The National Lotteries Board has already submitted its recommendations for new operators to the minister. The government has selected a special team to review the process and to ensure that all the clauses set out in the Request for Proposals have been met by all interested bidders.

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Despite the fact that the Minister was due to announce his decision about the new operator at the end of last month already, giving them time to adjust and enjoy an eight month transition period, it seems that Davies wants a little more time to make sure that the selection process and successful bidders met all the criteria.

Minister Davies is making extra sure that everything is in order because of what happened during the last process. When Gidani beat one of its fellow-bidders Uthingo, the latter contested the decision and the court overturned Gidanis’s license award. During the six months that the courts were deliberating and the sides were arguing their cases, there was no lotto runnng in South Africa, leading to a loss in revenue for good cause funds. It was Gidani that eventually won the right to run the South African lottery.

Many South African charities rely heavily on the lottery funds, with more than R18 billion distributed since the lottery launched. Last year alone, over R2 billion was allocated to nearly 3,700 organizations.

Successful candidates to take over from Gidani need to guarantee that up to 90% of their services are procured from South African companies. Another important criteria is that they ensure broad based black economic empowerment as part of the government’s policy of reverse discrimination.

In addition, the winner needs to employ the same infrastructure that the past lottery operators used so as to avoid major upheavals.

Minister Davies has promised that he will not take long to make his decision, and that the new operator, when chosen, will have ample time to make the transition smoothly and securely by June 1st, 2015.Click here for Lotto Results | Click here for Powerball Results

Lawrence Muller

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