Betting is a multi-billion industry currently in the centre of a storm over a 35 per cent income tax recently imposed by the government, a figure the gaming companies have protested as too high.
The clampdown on the illicit alcohols and gaming began in 2016, after a public outcry on their effects on adults and children. The alcohols have been blamed for causing health complications, such as blindness, breakdown of families and decline in economic productivity of addicted individuals.
Dr Matiang’i said national government functions at the counties would be consolidated to improve efficiency.
In the new structure, which he said would be rolled out soon, all national government functions at the regional level will be coordinated by county commissioners to improve service delivery and ensure prudent use of resources.
“As leaders, we must be humble enough to know that we must be coordinated for better functioning,” he said.
In the past, the Betting Control and Licensing Board accused counties of allowing installation of illegal gaming machines. With the help of the police, national government officials raided some of the gambling dens in bars in Nairobi, Mombasa and Nakuru, among other towns.
In many of the cases handled by police, youths were found interacting with criminals at gambling dens as they looked for money to engage in betting.