Babu Owino insists he paid varsity fees by betting as quest against suspension hots up
Embakasi East MP Babu Owino has claimed that he paid his university fee warning that he will take to the streets in protest against the suspension of licenses for some betting firms.
According to him, gambling is an internationally recognised and practiced activity and Interior CS Fred Matiang’i acted in bad faith.
“Personally, betting assisted me in paying my school fee. I graduated in my Actuarial Science degree because of betting, so we cannot be told that betting is bad,” he said.
Mr. Owino made the remarks at Serena Hotel during a press conference with his counterparts drawn from both Jubilee and the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) parties.
The vocal MP maintained that betting companies provide jobs for the youth.
“This betting was assisting in provision of employment; those who were employed in various betting companies are now jobless, where will they get jobs? The youth that were using this opportunity to pay fees, where will they get the money from?” he posed.
“This is a willing buyer-willing seller thing…let it be known to the Cabinet Secretary (Dr. Matiang’i) that from next week we’re going to mobilise youths in this nation to peacefully demonstrate against you,” Owino added.
Kakamega Senator Cleophas Malala on his part, also speaking during the presser, stated that it is not the prerogative of the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) to criminalise betting firms, further urging the government to investigate the matter through relevant agencies.
Nominated Senator Isaac Mwaura stated that betting companies have in the recent past involved in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities hence “we don’t need to overtax them but give them an opportunity to contribute to this country.”