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FG clarifies issues on National Lottery Licence

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Says States can’t blacklist holders of licence

By Johnbosco Agbakwuru

35 lottery firms operating illegally in Nigeria — EFCC

ABUJA–THE Federal Government on Thursday said that holders of National Lottery Licence do not need to obtain any other licence to operate in any state of the country.
The clarification came on the heels of the disagreements between the Lagos State Government and some lottery operators in the state where the former blacklisted some holders of lottery licence from operating in the state.
A statement issued by the Director General of National Lottery Regulatory Commission, NLRC, Lanre Gbajabiamila in Abuja said that states lacked the powers to blacklist lottery operators with the national licence to carry out their duties. 

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The statement read,  “The National Lottery Regulatory Commission, NLRC has noted with dismay, series of publications recently by the Lagos State Lotteries Board, LSLB discrediting some Federal Government licensed lotteries and gaming companies conducting business in Lagos State, without due regards to their status as holders of national licences.
“Of particular concern is the publication that listed many of the said NLRC licensees as illegal operators in Lagos State. Another case in point is the publication stating that Zoom Lifestyle lottery scheme was illegal, discouraging Lagosians from participating in the scheme.
“While not trying to join issues with the LSLB on this matter, NLRC considers it necessary to offer some clarifications in order that the Nigerian gaming public as well as other industry stakeholders are not misled, but be properly guided.
“Truthworth Solutions Limited (Zoomlifestyle lottery), GabLotto, Give ‘n’ take, Lotto, Western Lotto, Wesco Lotto, Chopbarh, Betbiga, Betwinner, and Bet24hrs are bonafide licensees of the NLRC, having completed the rigorous and due process of obtaining Lottery license and gaming permits.
“As the apex regulator of lotteries and gaming in Nigeria, the NLRC is not in doubt of its mandate and powers as conferred on it by the National Lottery Act 2005 which is the contemporary law governing lottery and gaming activities in modern Nigeria.
“Any operator licensed by the Federal Government has the right and is free to conduct business of Lottery and gaming in any part of the federation (Lagos State inclusive).”
The DG said that the issue has recently been settled by the judgment of the court.
He said,” The plethora of court judgements (which substantiate the above assertion) to the effect that holder of the National Lottery Licence does not need to obtain any other licence to operate in any other state of the Federation is still subsisting. Members of the public are advised to visit our website for full list of licensed Lottery and gaming companies in Nigeria.
“The issue of the LSLB blacklisting holders of National Lottery Licence therefore does not arise.
” The general public, in the interest of all industry stakeholders, is hereby encouraged to continue to patronise and participate in lottery and gaming schemes conducted anywhere in the country by holders of National Lottery Licence.”

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