Mini Casino’s in Malls cause Uproar


September 10, 2014

Religious and community organisations are in uproar over the proposed placement of 3000 electronic Bingo Gaming machines in shopping centres around the province.

KZN Finance MEC, Belinda Scott and the KZN Gaming and Betting Board have already received applications from 12 malls to install electronic bingo terminals on their premises.

Community and Religous leaders have however slammed the proposal, stating a decay in poor communities is the only outcome of such a venture.

Paul Lutchman, pastor of Christian Revival Centre, had this to say: “Gambling is a temptation to breadwinners of the family. More and more people will be getting up hungry, and going to bed hungry, with all these machines easily available. As a church we are working on a petition of 5000 signatures to hand over to the relevant authorities to oppose these casinos in our areas. We cannot
afford more opportunites for addictions and vices, which will result in the decay of our society,” said Lutchman.

Moulana Ismail Cassimjee stated that the community needs to take cognizance of the fact that many homes are broken due to the addiction of gambling. “Shopping malls should be a place for families to bond and socialise. By introducing these Bingo machines into our social spaces, it is going to attract the community towards negative behaviour,” said Cassimjee.

The Harinagar Hindu Dharma Sabha at its meeting held on Sunday, 7 September, discussed the applications for Electronic Bingo Terminals within the Province. According to its Chairperson Jayraj Singh, the members were vehemently opposed to such outlets at the doorstep of their community. All religious organisations are currently trying to promote moral generation amongst communities and these Bingo machines will set us backward.

“A Provincial Public Hearing for the Chatsworth Electronic Bingo Terminal application will take place on Tuesday,
16 September at 9am at Rajput Hall in Chatsworth. Another application had been made for a licence at Malvern Shopping Mall. The Community needs to mobilise and be vociferous at these hearings. In this regard a meeting of all Organisations and persons of interest is called for on Thursday, 11 September at 6:30pm at the Shallcross Community Hall,” said Singh.

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