Report of Commission of Inquiry for Horse Racing Revealed

The report of the commission of inquiry for horse racing which was presided over by Richard Parry (with evaluators Dennis Gunn and Paul Scotney) has been made public on the 31st of March. Its content seems to be denouncing several institutions, including the Mauritius Turf Club.

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It is written in the report that the MTC has been “brought to its knees” because of the existence of the two groups, one of which is managed by Gilbert Merven and the other by an ex-president.

Of the recommendations of the commission is to create a Mauritius Horse-Racing Authority that would take in charge the regulations governing the races.

Illegal betting was also mentioned in the report. This market causes the State to lose around Rs 800 million per year. The Mauritius Revenue Authority has argued that it is in no position to combat this scourge. The Gambling Regulatory Authority, the police and other State institutions have been blamed; it is implied that the lack of cooperation among these firms has been to be detrimental.

On the other hand, during a meeting bringing together the members of the commission, the commissioner of the police and the gambling police, it was concluded that crime related to horse racing are considered a low priority.

The report also reads: “the principal difficulty of ICAC investigating alleged offenses in Mauritius stemmed from the fact that the legislation dealing with such matters (the Gambling Regulatory Authority Act 2007) does not come within the remit of ICAC”.

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