We’ve all heard about the lottery curse.
It’s the fall after the glory, when people go from the average citizen to multi-millionaire in a matter of minutes, and then proceed to lose it all in the years to come.
Back in June, in South Africa, a former senior police officer was sentenced to 15 years in prison for stealing R2 million from his father’s lotto winnings.
His dad was living in poverty, while he lived the high life. It’s the ultimate dick move.
Tales like this seem to have had an impact on how people process their wins.
Let’s start with the lotto winner who bought a ticket last year from the Shell Amberfield petrol station in Rooihuiskraal, Centurion, but didn’t check it.
If he hadn’t claimed his winnings by September 19 this year, R23,7 million would have been donated to charity.
Luckily, he still had the ticket and is now deciding how to spend his millions.
Over to TimesLIVE:
The man, dressed casually in jeans and sneakers, was accompanied by his wife. The duo said they were government employees who had no intention of quitting their jobs despite the big win.
Reluctant at first to say what they’d do with their winnings, they said they would invest the money and empower their children.
“This will open many doors for us. It will give us freedom that we black people never had. Yes, we have been free since 1994 politically, but not financially,” he said.
No intention of quitting their jobs? Well, that grates me. Why bother playing the lottery if you’re not going to quit in overly dramatic fashion?
Another recent lottery winner, who snapped up a staggering R55 million PowerBall jackpot on June 4, also has some sensible plans.
A 39-year-old man who lived with his in-laws is planning to buy his family a dream home after winning a whopping R55m PowerBall jackpot.
“The first thing that I want to do is to invest a large part of my winnings so I don’t ever have to face financial challenges again,” the Gauteng man said.
“I also want to buy a house where my partner and our two children can live. We have been staying at her parents’ house and I have been longing for us to own a home of our own,” he said.
He also plans on pursuing his tertiary education. Wise – I like this man.
Meanwhile, a father of three in Cape Town is now R61 million richer after being unemployed for five years.
“I had not been working for the past five years, until I got a contract job early this year. Although this job is difficult and demands excessive physical strength, I was grateful to be able to help put food on the table for my family,” he said.
The man said he had previously won R75,000, which he used to build a four-roomed house. With his latest win, he intends getting a bigger house so that his children can have their own bedrooms.
He plans on investing a large portion of his winnings to ensure that he never struggles financially, ever again.
Two of the three winners used the quick pick option to randomly select their numbers, and the third chose his numbers manually.
A recent study commissioned by the National Lotteries Commission, conducted by the Unisa’s Bureau for Market Research, found that over 74 % of lottery players cited “need for money” as their reason for playing.
Less affluent South Africans represent a sizeable portion of lottery players and the unemployed represent 27.7% of national lottery players.
Also, about a quarter (23.9%) of national lottery players are government-grant recipients while 42.2% earn a monthly income of less than R5,000.
The average amount of money spent on lottery tickets every month is between R21 and R50.
Unlike victims of that infamous lottery curse, South African winners are, according to the study, more likely to spend their winnings on necessities.
Congrats to the three winners – may you live long and prosper.
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