Lotteries board chief quits

2012-01-20 12:34

The chief executive of the National Lotteries Board, Vevek Ram, has resigned, the board confirmed today.

“The chairperson of the National Lotteries Board, Professor Alfred Nevhutanda, regrets to announce that the board has accepted the request for early retirement by the board’s chief executive, Professor Vevek Ram, with effect April 1.”

The board said Ram would hand over to Nevhutanda for the next two months “to ensure the smooth running of operations” until a suitable replacement was found.

Ram had been a board member since the board’s inception in 1998.

He was appointed as chief executive in 1999.

Before joining the lotteries board, he was a professor in computer science and information systems at the University of Natal.

“Nevhutanda expressed sadness at the early retirement of Prof Ram and acknowledged the contribution of Prof Ram to SA’s first National Lottery and the setting up of various structures at the board,” the board said.

“He assures the lottery playing public and the many applicants for funding that there will be no interruption in the services offered by the National Lotteries Board.”

Democratic Alliance spokesperson Jacques Smalle said Ram’s resignation was a step in the right direction.

“Ram presided over a prolonged period of mismanagement and administrative chaos,” he said.

“In the last year especially, the lotteries board has begun operating increasingly like an ANC slush fund even as deserving charities and non-governmental organisations struggled to access funding.”

Smalle said the distribution agencies and the board had been stacked with ANC cadres for some time. Many of them needed to be replaced with individuals who had the relevant expertise.

“Before a fundamental transformation can take place, the current management will have to be replaced. A forensic audit into all grants allocated in the last three years is also a vital requirement.”

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