THE REGULATORY REGIME GOVERNING THE CASINO INDUSTRY IN KENYA: A NEED FOR REFORMS

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ABSTRACT

In the last two decades, the global casino gaming has expanded in a manner never envisaged. The demand to supply games of chance has proved insatiable in all gaming jurisdictions. The expansion has led into globalization of the industry whose growth has generated billions of revenue for governments while millions have been exposed to its negative consequences. With this exponential growth, there exists a dilemma on whether the current gaming regulatory regimes are effective. In addressing this impasse, different gaming jurisdictions have embarked on a periodic and continuous assessment of the effectiveness of their gaming orders. Regulators further appear to often question and test their frameworks to ensure they achieve their policies for regulating the industry. Where gaming laws are established to and are seemingly inoperative, obsolete and wanting, regulatory actions have been recommended or undertaken. These actions involve both selective and direct overhaul of existing regulatory statutes. The global regulation of Casino gaming has been based on three different regulatory regimes as exists in the United Kingdom, and those of states of Nevada and New Jersey in the United States of America. Aspects borrowed from these gaming legislations are found in almost all gaming jurisdictions. In Kenya, the Betting Lotteries and Gaming Act, Chapter 1132 Laws of Kenya served the country well until the early 1990s when the number of Casinos grew. The reasons for the exponential growth has been associated with, a weak and obsolete legislation, the perceived economic size of the industry, lack of a clear gaming policy and political interference of the operations of the regulatory board amongst other reasons.

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