Jackpot ticket nearly lost

2011-06-11 00:00

BLOEMFONTEIN —A blond man in his twenties is now R102 million richer after finally collecting the Powerball jackpot.

At one point, the unknown young man was on the verge of crumpling up his ticket because he did not believe he had won anything.

He bought the ticket, a quick-pick of R10,50 at the Spitskop Total-fuel station in Langenhovenpark, Bloemfontein, on June 2.

Dolf Westcott, manager of the fuel station, said the man returned on Sunday after the draw with his ticket. The cashier tried twice with no luck to scan his ticket.

“He told the cashier they can throw the ticket away, as he probably had not won anything,” said Westcott.

The cashier then tried scanning the ticket a third time. The Lotto-machine displayed a message that said the man had to get to the Lotto office.

Westcott said when the man finally realised he had the winning numbers, he just stood there gaping in disbelief. According to the manager, he does not know the winner, “but he often comes to the shop with his girl of about three years old to buy milk and cigarettes”.

Spokesperson for the national lotto operator, Thembi Tulwana, yesterday said the winner still could not believe his dream had finally come true when he realised that he had won the R100 million prize.

It was only after checking his numbers on the newspaper that everything really began to make sense for the young businessman in the transport industry.

“He plans to take it easy for a while then later expand his business,” said Tulwana. “He will not leave his job at the moment.”

The visibly shaken winner told of how he was an irregular player of the lottery, as he played mostly when there is a big jackpot up for the taking.

“This money will add substantially to the money that I have been saving towards a better life for myself and would also assist in paying off my debts,” he said.

“I am really looking forward to an easier and fulfilling life.”

Tulwana added the winner would be offered emotional and financial counselling towards fulfilling this goal.

The R102 million Powerball jackpot — a new record — was reached on Friday after 24 rollovers. It is the 28th instant millionaire created by Powerball.

The winner’s somewhat naive comment has sparked a wave of reactions and dreams on social media platforms.

On Volksblad’s Facebook-page, Lizelle Hugo said her husband had worked out “the interest would be about R320 000 per month after tax.”

Ella Hendriks said she would buy homes all over the world, after giving R10 million to their parents and maybe a million to her brother to invest. “Then I would use R10 million to open an orphanage for babies,” she added.

Riaan Hartzer said he would also pay his debts “and then hold a small bring-and-braai”.

On the Media24 site, reader Morentebo asked the critical question for many ladies, “shoo, is he married?”

Croix retorted, “Morentebo — you gold-digger!”

Dropa said, “Sounds like the good old story … the rich get richer. Congrats guy.”

Lauren asked, “How do you know that he is rich?”

Saywhat responded, “he is a businessman in the transport industry Lauren. he definitely isn’t poor!”

GrainOfTruth interpolated, “No man. ‘businessman in the transport industry’ = taxi driver.”

Onmyway opinionated, “I doubt that he WAS rich, as the article states that it will assist in paying off his debt. Sh*t, R100m will only ASSIST! He is one poor dude!”

Otelo concluded, “I don’t think this man knows the value of 100 million rands … and hence he speaks of debts — as if he’s gonna pay them off and buy his dad a Fathers Day present with the small change left over.”

powerball: Winning ticket did not scan

Bankmonitor.co.za lists the annual interest rates offered by SA’s banks on a fixed deposit for six months, from Absa’s 5,99% to Standard Bank’s 4,2%.

If the winner lends his R100 million to Absa for six months on Monday, Absa must pay him R5,9 million in interest during the first week of November, just in time for the Christmas buying spree.

Lotto winners have a year to claim their winnings, but if he claimed his R100 million next year, the receiver will keep R11,5 million in tax, in line with Finance minister Pravin Gordhan’s announcement in his Budget Speech during February that “Those who rake in gambling winnings of over R25 000, including payouts from the National Lottery, will from next year have to pay a 15% withholding tax.

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