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Kenya revokes SportPesa license, 26 other betting firms

SportPesa ranks as Kenya’s 11th most popular website, according to the website ranking site, Alexa

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Kenya revokes SportsPesa license, 26 other betting firms
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Kenya has not renewed the licences of 27 betting companies including betting giants, SportPesa, and ordered telecom firms to suspend accounts used by customers to place wagers.

The interior ministry, in a letter seen by reporters Thursday, said the companies had “outstanding renewal requirements” and were being reviewed to determine if they were “fit and proper”.

In a letter to Kenyan telecom Safaricom, the ministry asked for the suspension of these betting companies. Government officials said similar letters were sent to other firms.

READ: Could Kenya’s football betting ban have economic effects?

Placing bets through mobile phones is hugely popular in East Africa, where the industry is fast-growing and lucrative.

Its runaway popularity has been driven by satellite and digital television and smartphones.

SportPesa ranks as Kenya’s 11th most popular website, according to the website ranking site, Alexa.

But the industry has locked horns with the government.

In May, Kenya’s betting watchdog announced sweeping restrictions on gambling advertisements, including outright bans on celebrity endorsements and social media promotions.

The new regulations introduced by Kenya’s Betting Control and Licence Board also prohibited gambling ads being aired between 6am and 10pm or outdoors.

READ: Kenya announces ad restrictions for gambling operators

In April, the government threatened to revoke betting licenses for companies that did show they paid tax by July 1.

SportPesa terminated its sponsorship of Kenyan sports teams in January 2018 during a row over government plans to hike gambling taxes from 7.5 per cent to 35 per cent.

The Kenyan treasury backed down the following April, announcing a new taxation level of 15 per cent. A week later, SportPesa said it would restart sponsorship of Kenyan football, but on a reduced budget.

SOURCE: NEWS CENTRAL AND NEWS PARTNERS

 

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Zambian President fires finance minister

Sacked Finance Minister, Margaret Mwanakatwe to be replaced by central bank deputy governorm Bwalya Ng’andu

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Zambian President fires finance minister
Margaret Mwanakatwe, sacked Zambian Minister of Finance. (Photo by Rodger BOSCH / AFP)

Zambia’s President Edgar Lungu has fired Finance Minister Margaret Mwanakatwe, a statement from the presidency said Monday, as the economy grows at its slowest rate in 20 years.

Mwanakatwe, 57, was appointed only last year but was removed on Sunday without any reason given and replaced by central bank deputy governor Bwalya Ng’andu.

“I hereby terminate your appointment as minister of finance,” Lungu stated in his letter to Mwanakatwe according to the statement.

Ng’andu was sworn in on Monday, in a move welcomed by international investment markets with Zambia’s Eurobonds rising sharply. The price of its $750 million of securities due in September 2022 rose 5.2 per cent on Monday, according to Bloomberg News.

Zambia has struggled with falling prices of copper, its key export, and disputes with mining companies, with its foreign exchange reserves plunging and debt rising.

Lungu on Monday called for Zambians to “work as a team and stabilise the economy.”

But main opposition party UPND spokesman Charles Kakoma told reporters that Lungu’s government wasted money and a “cosmetic change” of ministers would not improve the economy.

SOURCE: NEWS CENTRAL AND NEWS PARTNERS

 

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Gunmen kill 10 in revenge attack in northern Nigeria

Gunmen opened fire on security forces as they arrived on the scene, shooting out the tyres of an armoured vehicle

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Gunmen Kill 10 In Revenge Attack In Nigeria | News Central
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About 300 gunmen raided a village in north-western Nigeria in a revenge attack, killing 10 people, burning cars and stealing cattle, police said. The assailants “invaded” Kirtawa village in Katsina state late Saturday, shooting residents and stealing cows, regional police spokesman Gambo Isah said in a statement.

“Ten persons were found dead, five injured,” Isah said. The bandits set fire to five cars and four motorcycles after stealing “an unspecified number of cows”, he said.

Police said the gunmen opened fire on security forces as they arrived on the scene, shooting out the tyres of an armoured vehicle and wounding a soldier and a paramilitary officer, before fleeing. 

The raid was a “reprisal attack” for an earlier assault on the bandits by vigilantes from the village, police said. Katsina state has seen a surge in attacks by kidnapping and cattle rustling gangs, prompting villagers to form vigilantes groups to defend themselves.

The bandit gangs maintain camps in Rugu forest which straddles Katsina, Zamfara, Kaduna and Niger states. Last week gunmen killed six people when they raided three villages in Katsina’s Kankara district.

SOURCE: NEWS CENTRAL AND NEWS PARTNERS

 

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Algeria defeat Nigeria to set up Senegal rematch for AFCON final

Algeria will take on Sadio Mane’s Senegal for the title on July 19, in a repeat of a group stage clash they won 1-0

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Algeria defeat Nigeria to set up Senegal rematch for AFCON final
Algeria's players celebrate their winning goal during the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) Semi-final football match between Algeria and Nigeria at the Cairo International stadium in Cairo. (Photo by JAVIER SORIANO / AFP)

Riyad Mahrez rifled in a stoppage-time free-kick to earn Algeria a dramatic 2-1 victory over three-time champions Nigeria on Sunday and set up a rematch with Senegal in the Africa Cup of Nations final.

Algeria led through a first-half own goal by William Troost-Ekong before Nigeria equalised with an Odion Ighalo penalty awarded after a VAR review.

However, as extra time looked necessary, Mahrez blasted in from 20 yards with the last kick of the match to send the Desert Foxes through to their first final since lifting the trophy for the only time in 1990.

Algeria will take on Sadio Mane’s Senegal for the title on July 19, in a repeat of a group stage clash they won 1-0.

“We are very happy to be in the final of the Africa Cup of Nations because it is something very special,” said Mahrez.

“It was our goal to do it for the people and for our families. We know they are behind us all the way. It’s my most important goal for the national dream. Yes, it’s my dream to win it and hopefully we will be able to.”

An injury to Youcef Atal, who fractured his collarbone during the quarter-final win over Ivory Coast on penalties, forced Djamel Belmadi to start Mehdi Zeffane at right-back, while Nigeria fielded the same team that overcame South Africa here.

Algeria supporters filled most of the lower tier at one end of the ground, dwarfing a small section of Nigeria fans, but there were large swathes of empty seats at the 75,000-capacity Cairo International Stadium.

Mahrez leads by example –

Leading scorers in the tournament and considered the most impressive side, Algeria quickly asserted themselves as Ramy Bensebaini headed narrowly over before a wicked Youcef Belaili cross nearly lead to a goal for Baghdad Bounedjah.

Hesitant defending from Kenneth Omeruo just outside his own area then allowed Bounedjah to nip in, but the Al-Sadd striker could only shoot tamely at Daniel Akpeyi.

Seemingly having moved on from the penalty miss that reduced him to tears in the last round, Bounedjah was consistently proving a nuisance to a nervy Nigeria backline with Jamilu Collins relieved to see a toed clearance land on the roof of the net.

Nigeria countered intermittently as Ighalo dragged wide after Mahrez was caught in possession, but the Manchester City winger promptly atoned as Algeria made the breakthrough on 40 minutes.

After gathering the ball on the right Mahrez danced past Collins before sending over a cross that flicked off the left-back and struck a helpless Troost-Ekong in the midriff before tricking over the line.

Super Eagles boss, Gernot Rohr has praised his side’s resilience, particularly the way they bounced back from a shock loss to Madagascar to eliminate defending champions Cameroon, and Nigeria again hit back with the aid of VAR.

Gambian referee Bakary Gassama initially dismissed Nigerian penalty appeals when a Peter Etebo shot struck the arm of Aissa Mandi but reserved that decision, with Ighalo sending Rais Mbohli the wrong way from the spot for his competition-best fourth goal.

Sofiane Feghouli blazed over late on and extra time beckoned after Ismael Bennacer rattled the bar in stoppage time, but Mahrez won it at the death with a thunderous strike into the top corner.

SOURCE: NEWS CENTRAL AND NEWS PARTNERS

 

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