Hassan Ayariga, the founder and leader of the All People’s Congress (APC), has made a strong commitment to ban betting if he is elected president.
According to him, he firmly believes that betting fosters a culture of laziness and emphasizes the need to redirect the focus of young people towards technological innovation.
Mr. Ayariga argues that encouraging the youth to engage in activities like technological innovation should take precedence over betting. He further asserts that the revenue generated from betting taxes would become unnecessary under his leadership.
In an interview on 3FM, Mr. Ayariga expressed his viewpoint, saying, “But why are we betting because betting is an avenue for lazy people… Because they have no jobs and are looking for avenues… I will cancel betting and make it illegal. Why do you bet? What do you mean by betting? When I need young people like them to sit on computers and design things and build the country where we have the highest technology in the world, you are sitting down doing betting.”
The recent introduction of a 10 percent withholding tax on betting, games, and lottery winnings by the government has sparked widespread public outcry.
Implemented on August 15, 2023, this contentious decision has ignited fervent debates nationwide, especially among Ghana’s youth, a significant demographic engaged in sports betting for both leisure and potential income.
While precise figures on Ghana’s betting population are unavailable, there has been a surge in the number of licensed betting companies operating within the country. At present, Ghana boasts 35 licensed betting companies, along with 26 casinos and eight establishments holding route licenses.