The Kenya National Assembly has formed a committee to investigate the phenomenal growth in gambling in the country.
The 11-member team is expected to table a report on its findings and recommendations on how to regulate the gambling industry in next 14 days.
Kenya Parliament Majority Leader Aden Duale and Deputy Minority Leader Jakoyo Midiwo will co-chair the committee.
According to Daily Nation newspaper, regulating the industry is crucial as the number of betting companies is rising and people can now easily gamble via their mobile phones.
The move is a check into East Africa’s emerging social-economic problem especially among the urban youth. Officials in Kenya say, that the industry is vulnerable to tax evasion and money laundering.
The decision by Kenya law makers come less than a week after Rwanda temporarily banned betting and gambling games which use slot machines as it seeks for suitable modalities at which such businesses should be regulated.
There is public outcry across the region that betting has narrowed the productivity and social-economic development of especially young people.
Rwanda’s New Times news paper noted that “On different local radio stations, callers-in, especially those living in the countryside, have continuously complained, some saying that these machines are breaking families apart”
But in Kenya, lawmakers are expected to come up with recommendations on how the government can tax the growing gambling industry while ensuring its sustainability.