Makadara Member of Parliament George Aladwa has faulted the government over its hostility to a number of betting firms which have allegedly failed to comply with licencing rules.
The state has since cancelled the licenses of among others SportPesa betting firm, which has in turn dropped its sponsorship of local sporting entities, including Kenya Premier League teams; AFC Leopards and Gor Mahia.
Speaking on Saturday, Aladwa, stressed on the need for the government, through President Uhuru Kenyatta, to reach a consensus with the company, after which it should be allowed to resume operations.
“Rais aruhusu KRA wakubaliane na SportPesa kuhusu hiyo deni inasemekana SportPesa wako nayo. (The president should let the KRA (Kenya Revenue Authority) agree with SportPesa in how the said debt it owes the government will be paid),” he said on Radio Jambo’s Mazungumzo Waziwazi, also attended by Nominated Senator Isaac Mwaura and politician Brian Weke.
He noted that failure to do this, the state might soon land in trouble with Kenyans whose lives were being positively affected by the companies’ operations in one way or the other, apart from the pending economic consequences.
“Ningetaka tuone vile SportPesa watarudishiwa njia zao waendelee kussuport timu nchini. Naona kutakuwa na maandamano kubwa sana wakenya wakissuport SportPesa. (“I would like to see SporPesa being allowed to resume operations to enable them continue supporting local teams. Otherwise, I can see a big demonstration by Kenyans in support of SportPesa) ,” he added.
On his part, Mwaura accused Uhuru’s advisors of misleading him into allowing the frustration of a company that has really been supporting the youth through various sporting ways.
His remarks were echoed by Weke who backed the peaceful demonstration ideas.
“We need to start mobilizing people ndio wajue hii kitu si mchezo (so that they can know this is not a joke),” he said.