World

Kenyans ‘given 48 hours to get money from betting firms’

Kenya’s gambling authority has in effect given people 48 hours to withdraw money from their mobile phone accounts that they use to place bets, the Daily Nation reports quoting an official letter.

The letter, from the Betting Control and Licensing Board, came after the country’s largest mobile phone operator, Safaricom, queried a request from the board to stop people accessing their electronic wallets that are used for placing bets.

On Wednesday, the board told Safaricom that 27 gambling firms, including SportPesa, had not had their license renewed as they had not met “outstanding renewal requirements”.

Safaricom responded by saying that it could not deny clients access to their money.

The Daily Nation reports that the telecoms companies have a “48-hour window” before they should shut the accounts.

“This is to permit you to allow gamers of the subject firms to withdraw any funds they may have deposited,” the Betting Board’s acting director Liti Wambua says in the letter quoted by the newspaper.

In a statement seen by the Standard newspaper, SportPesa said that it continues to “address license matters with industry stakeholders” and that the High Court has allowed the firm to continue operations “until the matter is resolved”.

bbc.com

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