RBC employee wins car in Landsloterij draw

POSTED: 04/15/12 4:07 PM

St. Maarten – On March 1, 2012, Philipsburg resident Swinda Richardson did what she had been doing for the last 15 years. She bought her lucky number 32211 from Landsloterij. The ticket cost 3.50 guilders but Richardson was a bit hopeful that it would yield big returns. More than a month after, the RBC Royal Bank employee still has her sights set on winning the jackpot but was stunned  to  learn that she won a new car as part of the lottery’s  60th anniversary celebrations.

The drawing took place on Friday at Marshall Motorworld where a red Hyundai I10 valued at $12, 500.00 was up for grabs. Richardson’s name along with thousands of other buyers from Saba, St. Eustatius and St. Maarten were placed in a rotisserie.

“Having left work at 12:00, I was at home relaxing when I got the call. When they said they pulled my name I started screaming.”

Richardson said that since she already owns a vehicle, she may consider presenting her new car as a gift to either her mother or son. She also had some words of encouragement for those who may be skeptical of playing the lottery.

“You have to be in it to win it.”

Director of Landsloterij Dudley Lucia said that the giveaway fits in well with the vision of his organization.

“The purpose for which we are selling tickets is that on one hand the person who sells can earn an income and on the other hand what is left goes back to the community. On March 1 we celebrated 60th years in existence. We had a big celebration in Curacao.  We have now given away four cars. One was in Curacao, one in Aruba, one in Bonaire and today’s drawing comprises tickets from St. Maarten, Statia and Saba.”

Ticket sales of the Landsloterij are in the hands of approximately 800 resellers. Resellers are often elderly people in need of supplemental income and have gained a certain priority when it comes to becoming an official reseller.

With its head office situated in Curacao, the Landsloterij is a Public Law Entity whose activities and personnel fall under the jurisdiction of the Minister of Finance. In Aruba, Bonaire, Sint Maarten, Saba and St. Eustatius there are depositaries representing the Landsloterij each with a Deposit Manager in charge. Lucia said that he was proud to be associated with an entity that has a rich background. He explained in detail the development of Landsloterij.

“In 1922 the Governor of Curaçao addressed the Minister of the Colonies in a letter expressing his concern about the fact that the population of the colonies spent too much on these illegal ‘gamblings’ on a monthly basis. His solution to this problem was the establishment of the Landsloterij. The Landsloterij thus originated as a tool to dampen the gambling fervor of the population and to keep a check on the foreign exchange leaving the islands. However, it wasn’t until 1949 that the “loterijverordening” (15 oktober 1949 P.B. 1965, nr. 122) of the current Landsloterij was signed and in 1951 it finally started operating.

At each bi-weekly drawing the Landsloterij provides 35, 000 tickets. There are 24 drawings each year. At each drawing the Landsloterij offers roughly 600, 000 guilders in cash prizes and approximately 20, 000 guilders in non-cash prizes. For normal drawings, the first prize is 200,000 guilders. In April and October the first prize is 500, 000 guilders and in January and July, the first prize is 1,000,000 guilders,” the lottery’s website states.

The Landsloterij is the only lottery in the Dutch Caribbean whose proceeds from ticket sales are used to finance socio-economic, charity, arts and science projects.

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