Categorized | National News

Web Shop Operators under Scrutiny

The Minister responsible for Gaming Obie Wilchcombe issued a warning yesterday urging web shop operators to comply with the Gaming Legislation during the transitional period because failure to do so could result in the closure of their businesses.

The deadline for web shops to submit license bids was extended from February 20 to Tuesday, March 10.

According to Mr. Wilchcombe, on Tuesday, 10 of the web shop operators who filed affidavits in December 2014, that allowed them to operate during the transitional period, became official applicants for gaming licenses with the submission of their Requests for Proposals (RFP) document to the Bahamas Gaming Board.

Therefore, he said, “From this point onward, all applicants will undergo strict scrutiny from the Gaming Board via due diligence investigations that will delve into all aspects of their business operations. The aim is to establish whether the applicants, their shareholders and directors, and staff are deemed to be fit and proper to hold the licences they have applied for.”

“Furthermore, their proposals will be meticulously viewed to see whether they possess the requisite abilities and meet the necessary requirements to conform and comply with the provisions of the Gaming and related legislation,” he added.

Mr. Wilchcombe also stated that those who were not successful in their submissions for licensing or operators who do not comply with the regulation’s requirements will be forced to shut down business with help, if necessary, from law enforcement officials.

“Meanwhile operators and the public alike are reminded and advised that noncompliance with the provisions set out in the Gaming Act with regards to the transitional period, namely, the filing of full and frank disclosures, the payment of arrear business licence fees and penalties, in addition to the ongoing timely payment of monthly gaming taxes, will result in closure of those businesses,” Mr. Wilchcombe stated.

He added, “Operators who are not in compliance and who are not in possession of a publicly displayed compliance certificate from the Gaming Board should cease operations immediately and the public should refrain from patronizing such premises. The Royal Bahamas Police Force will assist the Gaming Board in effectively policing and in enforcing the law with respect to those premises that are not permitted to be open or, that were instructed to close their businesses.”
The government is expected to announce the approval for licenses by June.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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