Fewer Gambling Hours in Botswana
Gambling venues in Botswana might see their operating hours cut shortly following a series of laws being considered by the government. Principal commercial officer in the ministry of trade and industry, John Matsheng said that in the still-being promulgated Gaming and Gambling Bill, there would be less hours for gambling at casinos. Matsheng said that as part of the new regulation plan, the board will have the discretion to reduce operating hours of casinos.
Botswana casinos currently operate around the clock which is a major attraction for people who have gambling problems. The board hopes that by reducing the operating hours of the casinos, it will be able to fight the problem of compulsive gambling. The extent of problem gambling in Botswana has not officially been quantified but it is estimated at one percent of the gambling population.
Another area to be addressed by the Gaming and Gambling Bill is the issue of funding for treatment of problem gambling facilities. A fund will be established to treat problem gambling and every gambling institution will be requested to contribute a specific levy towards this fund. Another way that the government planned to fight compulsive gambling was the introduction of an entrance fee at casinos, but the casinos wavered this fee for loyal customers, which ended up defeating the purpose.