Think you are supporting some random charity by playing the lotto? Think again. According to the National Lottery Distribution “Trust” Fund, this is what they’ve been up to:
- R471 million was allocated for projects linked to the World Cup Event. This included R170 million for three soccer fields in every province as well as R20 million for Bafana Bafana’s training in Brazil and Germany.
- R20 million was given to the cup local organising committee towards the event’s opening and closing ceremonies.
- R88 million went to the Trust for Health Systems and Planning for procurement of HIV testing kits and TB prophylaxis.
- And then eventually R1.869 billion was paid to 2285 charities in the 2009/10 financial year.
I don’t know about you, but I have a major problem with this:
- Surely issues like crime and poverty should take priority to World Cup events? All this money is being spent on something flashy and fleeting instead of bringing about long-term change that will improve the situation in South Africa.
- As we all know, this country is not immune to corruption, so why open the door to temptation? Is every cent really accounted for? Personally I would love to see the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund’s books.
- If the plan was for all the lotto money to go to charity organisations, then this is exactly where this money should be going. If the plan changed for some reason, certainly there should be certain procedure to follow, which should include letting the actual lotto players know where their money is going. This is just wrong in so many ways.
If you justified the purchase of your weekly lotto ticket with some vague idea that you are doing good, may I suggest you rather donate to recognized NGO’s? This way you can at least enjoy the tax rebate.
Louise’s 5c’s worth
When I think of Lotto, I think of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – thousands of people flocking to candy stores to buy a Willie Wonka Chocolate bar in the hope of finding a lucky golden ticket that will change their lives forever! Supporting a charity is not something that comes to the forefront of my mind. And to be honest, I don’t think anyone buys a Lotto ticket for the noble cause of supporting one of it’s charities. But, surprise surprise, in case you didn’t know, Lotto actually supports charities with a percentage of their takings. Lovely concept, isn’t it? They take a little money from all the hope-to-get-rich ticket holders and give it to the poor.
Nevertheless, it was with some kind of uneasiness that I received news of Lotto donating well over R20 million to Bafana Bafana.
Excuse the rhetoric but is Bafana Bafana a charity? Are they poor and needy? Do they have no commercial sponsors? Do they need to have training camps in Brazil? With corruption almost – and I hate to say this – ingrained in the psyche of South African leaders, it makes me question whether all this money will be accounted for. But besides that, I think Lotto should stick to a.) Creating millionaires through the draw of lucky numbers and b.) focusing on real needs and not the opening and closing ceremonies (and whatever else, the list is long) for Bafana.
Kerry’s 5c’s worth
Ok, well it has become fundamentally clear that the funds generated by the National Lottery are not being used as originally planned i.e. for charities, when over half of the gross income was allocated for projects linked to the 2010 World Cup event. I mean why does the local cup organising committee need 20 mil for the opening and closing ceremonies of the World Cup, when billions have been invested already by both FIFA and other similar international organisations? How do the people of South Africa benefit from soccer training camps in Brazil and Germany? If the money is not being used to help the needy, but rather being pumped into government organisations and projects, then why not use the money for something that would positively affect the lives of all working, taxpaying South Africans, why not subsidise ESKOM’s financial woes which would in turn ease the pressure off of us, 25% electricity hike for the next 3 years can easily be avoided. I mean let’s be honest, it looks like ESKOM has officially become an charity anyway.
I think we should insist that the ‘Fund’ must disclose all lotto recipients. I think that there would be some really interesting donations made. In conclusion I don’t think I will be supporting the National Lottery from now on, Euro lottery or UK lottery would be better.
What is your take on this?