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Nigerian Government to use gambling revenue to ‘progress nation’

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Gambling is not always the first thing that comes to mind when people think of Nigeria, but with gambling becoming legalized in many countries around the world, the West African country is not waiting to be told what to do.

The Nigerian government has legalized lottery and sports betting in the country, but other forms of gambling are taking their turns to get approved.

Ayo Arise, former chairman of the Senate Committee on Capital Market, disclosed during an interview that lottery is “for the advancement and progress of this nation.”

The federal government has approved Quick Lotto lottery nationwide, as well as sports betting, other forms of betting waiting for legalization in Africa’s most populous country include:

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A recent report by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) reveals that gambling will become a household word in Nigeria within the next five years.

The country has the potential to become the fastest-growing African country in terms of gambling very soon – and all kinds of online and casino gamblings will take centre stage. Nigeria is not the only African country to take the lead in gambling in Africa. South Africa and Kenya are also rising up fast in the gambling arenas.

National governments everywhere derive huge revenues from gambling. These revenues are used for national development, economic infrastructure, social amenities and other progressive projects in the country. The federal government of Nigeria says they are not going to be left behind in the benefits gambling can bring. To underscore this assertion, kiosks for sports betting are springing up everywhere in the country.

A KPMG report reveals nearly 60 million Nigerians aged 18-40 engage in active sports betting. The report goes on to say the average gambler spends about N3,000 or $15 to place stakes on sports betting. This translates to about 730 billion Naira being spent on sports betting annually. To this extent, Lagos and Abuja and other South-West states are setting up betting shops in every corner street on daily basis. Most of the betters place their bets on football games, with many of them saying gaming distracts them from the curse of unemployment.

Analysts say a combined revenue of $37 billion may be generated from online betting in Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa in 2018. The tax potential from this revenue is equally opening the eyes of the governments to the need for proper gambling regulations.