*We are giving Nigerians a home-grown lottery – Enabulele
*Gbajabiamila did not resume as Senate was misinformed – Sifawa
By Oluwole Franci
Acting Director-General of the National Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC), Alhaji Mahmoud Sifawa, has called for the utilisation of lottery funds to help reposition sports in the country.
Sifawa made this comment at the weekend in Abuja during the launch of the nation’s biggest lottery jackpot organised by Give ‘N’ Take Limited.
Sifawa who was represented by acting Director, Administration and Finance of the commission, Mr Robert Bolokor said that in lottery, 50% of the prize goes to the patrons. While 20% goes to the National Lottery Trust Fund (NLTF) for good causes which includes sports.
Sifawa added, “this is what we have been crying for, a national lottery, across the federation,” he said. He called on the managers of the lottery to ensure accountability and transparency in selecting winners of the game.
In his remarks, Managing Director of Give ‘N’ Take Limited, Mr Jolly Enabulele, said the road for the realisation of the company “had been very long. We thank God we have been able to achieve a lot successfully and Nigerians will have the privilege of playing a game that is not foreign but our own.”
He said the company had offices in over 24 states. “We have the web play. People can go to the web to play. This means we are all over Nigeria. Every part of Nigeria will benefit from this noble cause,” Enabulele told the cheering crowd.
On his part, Chief Executive Officer of Star Times Nigeria, Mr Justin Zhang, said they were partners with Give ‘N’ Take Limited in the project.
“This is a revolution for Nigerian lottery. We want to see the industry grow in Nigeria. Nigeria is a great country with the biggest population in Africa and as such should improve in its lottery industry. We are ready to participate in this programme to succeed together,” he said.
The draws will be done every Sunday and will be shown on Nigeria Television Authority (NTA). Nollywood actor, Segun Arinze will be the host and presenter of the draws weekly.
Lanre Gbajabiamila: On the controversial resumption or assumption of office by the substantive Director General, Mr Lanre Gbajabiamila, Alhaji Adamu Sifawa explained that “he actually came to Abuja, but he never resumed office. There was information that reached the Senate that he resumed office which is not true. He just inspected the office. There is no way he could have resumed office when his office was not ready. I can categorically tell you right now that that is not the case,” he told journalists.
It would be recalled that the Senate had on 17th May, criticised the appointment of Gbajabiamila without confirmation by the upper legislative chamber.
“It is sad to note that a new director general of the National Lottery Regulatory Commission has not only been appointed by the President but he has resumed office without being confirmed.
“He has started signing documents and carrying out functions of the office of the Director General of the commission without referral or confirmation by the Senate.”