The Educate Ghana Summit wants President Akufo-Addo to introduce a piece of legislation in Parliament to protect the youth in the country from activities of betting companies or institute an outright ban on the companies to operate in the country.
According to the group, the activities of these betting companies are having a devastating effect on the lifestyle of the youth who are supposed to be the country’s future leaders.
The request was contained in a petition letter to the President, signed by the Chief Executive Officer of the Group, William Boadi, dated May 27, 2019.
They want the President to copy the example of the Ugandan President, Yoweri Museveni, who has ordered that no new licenses should be issued for the establishment of sports betting, gaming and gambling companies or renewal of the licenses of such companies upon their expiration.
They argue that the activities of Sports Betting Companies in the country are encouraging the youth to be lazy and engage in violent activities. They are of the view that the energy of these youthful assets to the country could be put to better use rather than wasting it to support activities of gambling.
They bemoan the fact that children below the ages of 18 years who are supposed to be in school are allowed to engage in the activities of these gaming centres at night and during the day.
The Educate Ghana Summit has therefore called on the government to do something fast to protect the youth and to save the future of the nation.
Below is the full Release on the Petition Letter To the Office of the President
CEASE SPORTS BETTING COMPANIES FROM OPERATION TO SAVE THE FUTURE OF OUR YOUTH - Educate Ghana Summit Boss.
Educate Ghana Summit, with greater concern, has seen the nature of operations of the sports betting, other gaming and gambling companies and their repercussions on the citizens of our nation, especially the youth and the national development. We are thereby concerned and moaning for the future of this nation. Instead of seeing to the utilization of the potentials and skills of the youth that could be put into a good use, the state had allowed these companies to rather destroy their future.
We are hereby petitioning the office of the President to either place a total ban on operations of these betting companies or institute a legislation to deter people, particularly, the youth from their activities and operations so as to save the youth of our country.
Mr President, the destiny of every country lies on her citizens, and so the future of our country lies in the hands of our youth. The youth of today would become the future leaders tomorrow when we shall have no say in active service. In fact, the youth would surely replace the aged at all structures of governance, and would also be handing over the mantle to the younger and yet to be born generations. That is why succession plans are very important to be put in place for the young ones in order to take the nation forward when the old ones are no more.
The kind of life that the young ones would live today would determine whether or not, they would be taking our nation forward or backward.
These betting activities that the energetic, strong and potential youth are seen doing at these sports betting centers are source of worry to Educate Ghana Summit and other well-meaning Ghanaians. These activities sometimes, generate violence.
Meanwhile, their energy and time could be directed to productive ventures that can contribute to the growth and development of themselves and the country at large.
At times, children below 18 years are seen at these centres at night and during the day. Children who should be in school are sometimes seen playing sports bets and other computer games. Unfortunately, some parents don't even care. What do we predict for the future of these young ones? Most of our youth are wasting their skills, ideas, potentials, energy and time on these sports betting activities. The operators of these betting companies are only focusing on their profit making without thinking about the negative effects on the society.
Educate Ghana summit acknowledges that these betting companies are accepted globally, however, the fact that it is accepted globally does not mean we cannot stop it. Several countries have made efforts in banning the sports betting companies. The recent one is Uganda.
Mr. President, Ugandan government, in last month banned all the operations of sports betting companies. Their reason was that, it encourages laziness on the part of the youth. Ugandan President, Yoweri Museveni has ordered that no new license should be issued for establishment of sports betting, gaming and gambling companies or renewal of such companies upon their expiration.
The Minister of finance and other government officials of Uganda assert that sports betting is diverting the attention of young people from hard work. Recently, Ghana’s Minister of finance and economic planning, Mr. Ken Ofori Atta, testified on the front page of the daily search light newspaper that, sports betting companies are really destroying the youth in Ghana.
Uganda is a good example among a host of countries around the world that had banned gambling as others have discouraged their operations. In sub-Saharan Africa, several countries are discouraging the operations of these betting activities. For example, Kenya, which is the third largest gambling market in Africa. Nigerian and South Africa introduced 35 percent profit tax on gambling operations in early 2018.
Mr. President, most Islamic countries are assiduously banning gambling activities base on religious grounds. The United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Jordan, Brunei, Somalia, Sudan, Egypt, Indonesia, Qatar and Lebanon have official regulations that ban betting except in Casino.
Singapore and Cambodia have also banned all forms of gambling unless exemptions are granted, but they are rarely issues and come with higher minimum requirements aimed at limiting the amounts people can spend on betting. Albania also passed a similar law to Uganda in October 2018. All these countries have realized the negative implications sports betting will have on their countries.
Educate Ghana summit is condemning the activities of these sports betting companies and we are saying that they are not beneficial to the country. Comparing the cost and benefit analysis, the costs outweighed the benefits derived from these companies. We are therefore petitioning your high office to ban the operations of these companies. Both the Muslim and the Christian society frowned upon gambling and it is condemned in that regard.
In conclusion, Mr. President, we encourage your government to create jobs for all the youth without face looking.
Long live Educate Ghana summit
Long live Ghana.
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Mr. Boadi William CEO,
Educationist & Motivational Speaker.