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THE NATIONAL LOTTERIES BOARD (article first published : 2006-07-7)

In view of recent articles in the National press, the National Lotteries Board would like to clarify issues around the roleplayers and the process of distributing funds to beneficiary groups by the Distributing Agencies for the relevant sectors.

The National Lotteries Board is appointed in terms of the Lotteries Act, No. 57 of 1997. In terms of the Act the Board is responsible for the regulation of the National Lottery and all other lotteries in the country. The Trustee of the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund (NLDTF), it is required to report to Parliament on the distribution of funds to good causes.

The Board is not involved in the adjudication of applications for funding, the allocation of grants or the appointment of the Distributing Agencies.

The Distributing Agencies are made up of groups of individuals appointed by the Minister of Trade and Industry. Nominations for Members of the Distributing Agencies with relevant expertise are called for through a National call advertised in the media. These nominees are shortlisted by the Department of Trade and Industry and extensive security vetting by the National Intelligence Agency (NIA). The Minister of Trade and Industry then discusses all Members who have received security clearance with his Cabinet colleagues responsible for the different sectors. The accepted Members then accept their appointment and sign a Memorandum of Understanding.

The functions of the Distributing Agencies are as follows: To determine the focus groups for funding e.g. women, children, the disabled etc; to adjudicate applications and allocate funds to successful applicants. This cannot be done by anyone else but the Distributing Agency.

On making an allocation, the Distributing Agency attaches conditions to Grants. This is relayed to applicants in the letter of allocation and the Grant Agreement. Some of the conditions are: provision of quotations, revised budgets, site visits etc. When the required information is submitted, the Distributing Agency can then sign-off and submit a request to the National Lotteries Board for payment. In the even of multiple payments, subsequent payments are made on the submission of satisfactory progress reports on previous payments. The reports are approved by the Distributing Agencies and then submitted to the Board for payment.

The National Lotteries Board offers administrative services to the Distributing Agencies through the Central Applications Office. The functions of the Central Applications office can be described as follows: to receive and process all applications received by the advertised deadline; preparation of applications for adjudication by the Distributing Agencies; relaying of decisions by the Distributing Agencies to all applicants, and receipt and further processing of information required by the Distributing Agencies to assist in their decision making process.

The term of office of the Distributing Agencies came to an end at the end of March 2006. The Department of Trade and Industry is in the process of finalising the new appointments.

The Central Applications Office continues to process applications in preparation for the new Distributing Agencies. After the confirmation of appointment of the new Distributing Agencies by the Department of Trade and Industry and the required induction programme, all outstanding applications will be presented for consideration.

Since the inception of the National Lottery in 2000, the Distributing Agencies have allocated over R4,7 billion to more than 9,000 beneficiary organisations. In the period April 1, 2005, to March 31, 2006, a total of R1,3 billion was allocated to 2,039 beneficiaries.

Further information from Sershan T Naidoo, Manager, Player Services & Media Liaison on 031 012 394 3468, fax 012 394 4468 or e-mail: www.nlb.org.za




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