Gambling in Tanzania existed even before the establishment of formal betting stations. People would place informal bets whenever fierce old football rivals Yanga and Simba matched up.
There was pool betting - where you can bet on who will win an entire game or match. It was the first recorded gambling act that was regulated under Pools & Lotteries Act 1967 (which came into effect in 1974).
The National Lottery was introduced in 1985. However, there was no significant gaming until 2009 when casinos were legalized after many years of protests by locals through sit-ins outside government offices.
Some people say that gambling existed long ago during festive occasions like weddings, but others dispute whether records prove such things happened.
Tanzania’s continued economic reform gave birth to the formulation of the National Policy on Gaming Activities. In 1992, economic liberalization policies and reform programs changed the overall landscape of significant investment projects. The 1997 Tanzania Investment Act, for instance, stimulated leisure and tourism-related investment.
The government concluded in 2003 that it needed to control the gambling industry better. To do this, it enacted the Gaming Act of Tanzania. The Gaming Board of Tanzania oversees the sector, grants licenses to operators, and collects taxes from gambling establishments.
Gambling nowadays in Tanzania
Gambling is still popular in Tanzania, both among locals and tourists. Houses like Le Grande Casino, Princess Casino, New Africa Casino, Sea Cliff Casino, Las Vegas Casino and Palm Beach casino are just a few of what the country has to offer. They are spread across Arusha, Dar-es-Salaam (has the highest number), and Songea.
The flourishing tourism industry in Tanzania also affects the gaming scene. Areas that offer the best scenery have more casinos because tourists and people in the hospitality industry are a major casino target market.
Following the Coronavirus outbreak, many people turned to online gambling. Many of them learned they could enjoy games without risk or health concerns at home and stuck there even after casinos were re-opened again.