MEDIA STATEMENT – CASE HEARING IN SUPREME COURT OF APPEAL
 
Desert Palace Hotel Resort (Pty) Ltd v Northern Cape Gambling Board

Supreme Court of Appeal - 630/05 Hearing date: 14 November 2006
  Judgment date: 24 November 2006

A ‘holder of a licence’ as contemplated by s 65 of the Northern Cape Gambling and Racing Amendment Act 5 of 1996, and s 81 of Act 6 of 2000 must have had a licence physically ‘issued’ for it to be liable for payment of gambling levies and penalties.


Media Summary of Judgment

The Supreme Court of Appeal today upheld an appeal by Desert Palace Hotel Resort (Pty) Ltd against a decision of the Northern Cape Provincial Division, holding it liable to the Provincial Gambling Board for the payment of penalty of R1 598 354,00, arising from its failure to pay a gambling levy in respect of its Casino in Upington.

The issue in the appeal was whether Desert Palace was a ‘holder of a licence’ as contemplated by s 65 of the Northern Cape Gambling Act 5 of 1996, and s 81 of Act 6 of 2000, and thus liable for payment of a penalty. What the SCA was required to decide was whether a ‘holder of licence’ must have a document physically issued to it as contended by Desert Palace or whether it is sufficient that the board merely grant approval to the licence holder, as the Board contended.

The SCA concluded that a ‘holder of a licence’ contemplates a physical document having been issued to the licence holder – and because Desert Palace had not had a licence physically issued to it, it could not be held liable for payment of the penalty.