THE EDITOR: As a former deputy director of the NLCB, it is obvious to me that the ten per cent tax on the winnings of online games imposed by Minister of Finance Colm Imbert will see the rise of illegal games of chance once again, in particular whe whe.
There will be a decline in the revenues generated by the NLCB’s main income earner, Play Whe, with this regressive tax.
The introduction of Play Whe in 1993 by then minister Wendell Mottley dealt a serious blow to the illegal whe whe.
However, the last few years have seen the rise of whe whe and the announcement by the Minister of Finance will no doubt create the enabling environment for an explosion of the illegal game.
Why would anyone play the NLCB game when their winnings will be subjected to a ten per cent tax and they can play a similar game which will offer better odds and not be taxed?
Imbert’s taxation measure defies logic and will only serve to increase illegal activity.
The Ministry of Finance has failed to enforce existing legislation to shut down the illegal whe whe operations estimated at $100 million a year.
The Mottley measure effectively limited whe whe. It is clear Imbert is no Mottley.
DEVANT MAHARAJ via e-mail