The Gauteng Division of the High Court yesterday declared the Minister of Trade and Industry’s decision to award the licence to operate the national lottery to Ithuba Holdings (Pty) Ltd to be unlawful in Gidani (Pty) Ltd v Minister of Trade and Industry and Others. The licence agreement concluded between the Minister and Ithuba has been set aside and the award of the licence is remitted to the Minister for reconsideration.
Gidani was the incumbent Lottery operator, but its fixed term licence came to an end on 31 May 2015. Ithuba took over the running of the Lottery on 1 June 2015 after a process conducted by the National Lotteries Board (the Board) and the Minister to select the operator for the third national lottery operator licence.
In November 2014 Gidani took the Minister’s decision to award the licence to Ithuba on judicial review to the Gauteng Division of the High Court. The application was brought on the basis that the decision was not lawful with reference to the requirements of the Lotteries Act 57 of 1997 (the Act) and administrative justice because, amongst other things, (1) the Board had recommended Gidani as the Preferred Applicant; (2) Gidani’s returns to good causes were significantly higher than those offered by Ithuba; and (3) Gidani’s local content offering, which included significant local manufacture, had not been properly assessed by the Minister. An expedited review followed.
Bowman Gilfillan Africa Group