Dominican Republic’s is the only Lottery to go broke
Santo Domingo.- Dominican Republic’s National Lottery has earned the ominous title of being the first such agency to go broke, and forcing president Leonel Fernandez to transfer its administration to the Internal Taxes Agency, ironically considered the most official of all government entities.
Since 1997 the Lottery lost its credibility when a ring headed by the now fugitive Frederick Marzouka scammed it out of more than RD$90 million by manipulating drawings, among others irregularities.
Most of its administrators have been involved in scandals, including the most recent, Enrique Martinez, whose wife, La Romana senator Amarilis Santana, was given Lottery funds even while campaigning for the congressional seat.
Its fate was sealed early last week when Fernandez signed into law a repeal of the Lottery’s function of collecting the taxes from the country’s thousands of betting parlors.
Martinez, who until Friday was its administrator, affirms that the agency should receive more than RD$100 million per month, gets only RD$30 million for expenses such as payroll, and notes that it operates with a RD$14 million deficit.
But adding insult to injury, Fernandez named as its new administrator, Jose Francisco Peña Tavárez, son of Jose Francisco Peña Guaba, whose tenure as Lottery chief was marked with scandal.
Source: Dominican WatchDog
Category: DR News |