A leading politician in Nigeria has said that he hopes that the country’s gambling industry could prove to be a significant source of revenue for the state.
Senator George Akume, who is the Minister of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, said that the National Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC) even had the potential to be the country’s second highest revenue earner after the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
Akume was making his comments during his first visit to the headquarters of the Commission, which is based in Abuja, on Thursday. He went on to say that he wanted to support the NLRC:
“I’m not an expert in this field, but I am informed and inclined to believe that if what you are doing is properly managed, this commission has the capacity to contribute meaningfully to the uplift of our people.”
He went on to state that he believed that the organisation could earn substantial sums of money for the government and that the possibilities were enormous. But he also said that there was more that the commission could do. He specifically emphasised the creation of a national lottery game and efforts at recovering lost revenue, and also cited potential amendments to the National Lottery Act of 2005, which he said he would consider as soon as drafts were put forward.
Sen. Akume also suggested that the NLRC should consider moving from their current temporary site to a more permanent one, which would produce cost savings.
The NLRC, which was set up as part of the 2005 Act, regulates all legal gambling in Nigeria. This includes lottery games, land-based casino gambling and sports betting, but roulette, dice games and other no-skill online casino games are banned.