The National lottery operated by Tilia Games, an entertainment solutions provider under the licence of Lotto Rwanda has hit 3200 winners in three weeks of operation. The Project Director for Tilia Games, Johannes Lind, said, ’There were 1,065 winners in the weekly lottery draws’.
A minimum of US$55,555 (Rwf.30 million) cash and other prizes was awarded. In one of its gambling programmes dubbed, ‘Crazy Sunday’, a young man aged 20 years, Zuberi Hakizimana, won Rwf.10million.
The programme is held every Sunday from 5:00 pm to 6:00 pm. He was however optimistic that the winners may increase up to 85,000 once their operations are launched countrywide by April this year. This expansion programme goes in tandem with that of Rwandatel’s upcountry drives.
This however depends on the ticket sales, which are currently estimated at 25,000 being sold per week. According to the programme, winners are drawn every weekend after procuring a lottery ticket bought at Rwf.300 which are sold on the streets by authorised vendors with cellular handsets connected to GPRS technology provided by Rwandatel.
The first Rwandan National Lottery was launched in mid-December last year under the support of GSI, a gaming company believed to have launched 20 lotteries in USA, Europe, and South Africa.
Its Rwanda project site is now its 21st worldwide. After two weeks of operation, Lotto Rwanda opened up a prize claiming account in Eco-Bank Rwanda headquarters. This is intended to facilitate the claiming of the cash prizes easily.
Officials say that the account help desk is meant to assist winners to seek for advice on how to make use of their cash prizes. Opening of such desks is expected to spread to other branches of the bank within Kigali city and upcountry as the company plans to roll out it operations countrywide.
The licensed company, Lotto Rwanda is a Public-Private Partnership initiative owned by the government with shares to the tune of 40 percent and the private sector with 60 percent.
According to the joint venture agreement, Lotto Rwanda contributes a certain percentage to government for the development of sports, culture and entertainment.
Government officials say that this creates and maintains a world-class and responsible gaming experience, while raising funds and giving an opportunity to locals to realise their life expectations while supporting government programmes.