BETTING IN BOOKMAKERS ON NATIONAL LOTTERY DRAWS IS UNDERMINING NATIONAL LOTTERY, DAMAGING COMMUNITY RETAILERS AND ERODING GOOD CAUSES FUNDING
RGDATA, has called on the Government to expressly outlaw the practice of betting on the outcome of National Lottery draws or to risk fundamentally undermining the National Lottery and damage the stakeholders that benefit directly from its operation.
RGDATA Director General Tara Buckley said that the practice of Lottery Betting on the outcome of the Lotto, EuroMillions and the Daily Millions draws was directly undermining the National Lottery and needed to be urgently addressed by the Government.
“The licensed National Lottery retail agents that RGDATA represents are increasingly aware of the damage being caused by high street and online bookies who are taking bets on the outcome of the different National Lottery draws,” Buckley stated.
“The National Lottery was set up in 1986 as a State Lottery to facilitate the provision of funds to Good Causes in society. Lottery draws are a key part of the offering of the National Lottery. The local community retailers that RGDATA represents have played a key role in rolling out the National Lottery and the various draws nationally. And they have done so under a clear set of rules, responsibilities and obligations. The Good Causes funding has supported many local community initiatives and has made a genuine difference to people’s lives.
“The bookies taking bets on the outcome of National Lottery draws are piggybacking on the brand, reputation and goodwill of the National Lottery. They are not subject to any requirement to fund Good Causes and do not have to comply with the regulatory restrictions that apply to the National Lottery or their retail agents.
“Unless the Government moves now to prohibit betting on the outcome of National Lottery draws, irreparable damage will be done to the National Lottery and the retailer network that supports it. There is also the prospect of additional commercial initiatives and draws that will inflict more damage on the National Lottery and reduce the funding available for Good Causes.”
RGDATA said that it has made representations to the Minister of State at the Department of Justice to include an amendment to ban the practice in the Gaming and Lotteries (Amendment) Bill which is currently before the Dail.