Wed | Dec 12, 2018

Why deny KSAC lotto licence?

Published:Monday | September 15, 2014 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir: I wish to register my disappointment and displeasure with the disrespect with which Central Government has treated ideas and plans proposed by councillors and councils over the years.

Our plans and proposals, which are sometimes solicited, seem only to be put in File 13, or shredded.

Take the Kingston and St Andrew Corporation, for example. It's the first council to put in place a condition that all buildings must be built with underground rainwater catchments, yet it was not until a minister mentioned same that it was publicly highlighted.

Similarly, I cannot understand to this day why the KSAC was not granted a lotto licence, which made it as far as the desk of former Finance Minister Audley Shaw.

After seeing the conflict-of-interest report in the papers regarding the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission during the time of the application, I am forced to ask the contractor general to investigate on what grounds the KSAC was refused the licence.

The City Lotto, as planned, would in five years fix at least 60 per cent of parish council roads, employing 2,500 people directly and 5,000 labourers on road projects. It was also intended that revenue from the lotto would build a factory to make gabion baskets for sale across the Caribbean. That project would have employed another 100 people.

The lottery scheme is, at present, one of the very few answers for youths in Jamaica to be employed. Central Government needs to take a serious look at the proposal and rethink the position.



Whitehall Division