The CHAIRMAN OF CONGRESS (Mr Deputy Roberto de Lucena) Following up on a list of invited guests, I invite to speak from the tribune Dr. Witoldo Hendrich Júnior, lawyer, professor and defender of the interests of gaming consumers. Your Honor has up to 5 minutes on the tribune. Witoldo Hendrich Júnior – Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Your honorable Chairman of the Congress, Members of the Board, Deputies here present, citizens here present or attending this session through Congress TV. We will hear and already have heard a lot about the positive and negative effects of the regulation of gambling in Brazil. We heard here about the harmful effects of a possible addiction, which is something that can destroy a family, and I must state immediately that I have two children, wife, mother, father, sister, grandmothers, cousins, and if there is something I would certainly dislike, is find a loved one in a situation of compulsive gambling.
Last week, I was invited to visit the Malta Gaming Authority, the most rigid regulator of online gaming on the south african online casino deposit with entropay. Malta, by the way, is an island of 300 square kms, which produces one fifth of its food, almost no source of drinking water and produces no energy. It had everything to be one of those places that lives on donations.
But no! Malta has installed in its territory the biggest technological pole of the region. For comparison purposes, it’s like a Silicon Valley in the Mediterranean.
The country is very rich, despite those natural deficiencies that I mentioned. One of the verticals of Malta’s tech pole is the gambling regulation on the continent. Today, most European countries allow a company to operate online gambling in their country if this company has a license issued by Malta Gaming Authority. On this trip to Malta, I learned that online gambling is THE ONLY ONE Ladies and Gentlemen, THE ONLY ONE industry capable to control eventual addiction in its own core business. We do not have mechanisms legal, physical or social, to prevent a person weighing 150 kilograms from going to a fast food chain and eating one more hamburger. We do not have mechanisms to prevent a person from entering a bar and buying a retail cigarette.
We can not stop a person from taking the last dose of cachaça, although an alcoholic. We can not stop a person from spending his last penny in an official lottery store filling in the lottery ticket that will save his life in the new years eve jackpot draw. On the other hand, Ladies and Gentlemen, Malta Gaming Authority and all its game control systems would make it IMPOSSIBLE let me highlight this IMPOSSIBLE take that last dose of cachaça, that additional ice cream, because there is absolutely no way to play in an online environment, without being properly identified and previously logged into the player account. It means that if my wife ever thinks that I am playing more than I should, she is able to contact the operator and regulator of the game and they will suspend my personal player account.
Even if I manage to steal a necklace on the street to fill up my addicted and desperate desire for a milkshake, I will not be able to make a deposit in my online player account because the operator can suspend it. Ladies and Gentlemen, the solutions that online gaming operators in Malta not only Malta, but operators in general designed for addiction control are absolutely innovative and should be exported, not only to landbased gambling, where it is already doable, but for all other industries, be it retail store… How do I prevent a woman, charmed by a purse, to buy her hundredth? If it were an online gambling, I could stop her, because I can suspend her player’s account. How do I prevent the latter act of addiction in any other industry? Ladies and Gentlemen, online gambling is the unique industry capable of controlling and preventing addiction.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Now, let me go back to the beginning: I would abominate one of my children addicted to gambling. In this scenario we have today, God forbid, but if it does happen, he will get addicted to an illegal game that is played behind that second newsstand on the right, or after that bar, where there is a seated person scoring illegal game or in the underground of a house in the interior of São Paulo, where there are hundreds of slot machines operating illegally. It is the kind of addiction I’m afraid of, and I do not want to see my children in this situation.
I finish here, Mr Chairman, with an invitation I received in Malta, to take any Member of the House or the Prosecutor of the Republic to visit Malta and understand this subject from inside and under the perspective of a regulator. I need 20 seconds. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Millôr Fernandes has a funny phrase, which I would like to close with: “Our friends do not know many things, but they always know what they would do in our place.” I do not know many things, but I know what I would do in your places: I would vote yes for gambling, yes for regulation and yes for the single one possibility in the near future to control eventual compulsive gambling, as exposed here in the tribune. Thank you all very much, and good day to everyone.