By Isaac Arkoh, GNA
Darmang (C/R), Nov. 11, GNA - A combined taskforce of security agencies in collaboration with the Assin South District Assembly have impounded 25 Chinese gambling slot machines (jackpot) following a massive crackdown mounted in key betting communities across the district.
The Machines were seized in major gambling communies including; Assin Adadientem, Nsuekyir, Darmang, Manso, Gyinabode, Nyankomasi and Jakai where many of the operators were just caretakers and could not show authorised certificates of operation by the Assembly.
Briefing the media at a news conference, Assistant Supritendent of Police (ASP), Okyere Andam, the District Police Commander said the slot machines were being operated openly without permit from the requisite institutions.
He stated that the Assembly had not given operational license to any of the operators in the area and therefore it was illegal and would be a great disservice to the people if the impunity was allowed to fester.
According to ASP Andam, the police crackdown was gingered by the rising patronage of these gambling machines by under-aged school-going children to either operate or engage in the gambling activities.
That, he noted was to blame for the recent increase in cases of petty crime in the area as scores of parents complained about upsurge of petty thievery fueled by the temptation of young people to make quick cash.
He further explained that the manner of their operations were in contravention of section 48 of the Gaming Act 2006, (Act 721).
The Acts mandates such entities to have identifiable office, a service mark, logo registered with the registrar general among others to operate.
However, he stated emphatically that none of operators had registered with the Assembly and issued a letter of authorisation to operate.
The Commander who was not happy with the trends gave his last warning saying the line had been drawn and that anyone caught with the machines again would be made to face the full rigours of the law to serve as deterrent to others.
The District Commander promised to intensify and sustain the exercise as yuletide inches in to rid the area of the increasing child-gambling activities, adding that the rampant cases of gambling among school-going teens, if not addressed, could degenerate into a social crisis.
He warned all operators of such facilities to voluntarily destroy them or seize operation before the law catches up with them, and added that the law was no respector of persons.
Parents were also counselled to imbibe the attitude of virtuousness in kids at early stage and monitor them intensely to prevent them from engaging in such naferious activities that had curtailed the academic progression of many children in the area.
Nevertheless, ASP Andam thanked the Regional Coordinating Council (RCC), the Chiefs, parents and media for the unalloyed support to fighting the illegal child-gambling activities that was gaining quick roots.