'My biggest concern was my children': R81m PowerBall winner is a dad who lost his job in 2019

12 November 2020 - 17:16
A father struggling to support his children after losing his job in 2019 is now a multimillionaire.
A father struggling to support his children after losing his job in 2019 is now a multimillionaire. 
Image: 123RF/tawhy

A father who struggled to make ends meet and support his children after losing his job in 2019 is now a multimillionaire. 

The East London man purchased his R15 ticket in Quigney and won a huge R81m in October 27's draw.

“On the morning of October 28, at about 3am, I couldn’t sleep, so I decided to check the PowerBall results online and that’s when I found out I had won the jackpot,” he said.    

Lottery operator Ithuba said the man had claimed his winnings.

Asked why it took him two weeks to come forward, the winner said that he had misplaced his identity document and knew he could not receive his winnings without valid identification.

He said the windfall came at the right time as he could not support his children.

“I lost my job in 2019, and I started doing odd jobs to make ends meet. My biggest concern was taking care of my children,” he said. 

“A few weeks ago the mother of my first child threatened to take me to the maintenance court as she was not happy with the money that I was contributing towards raising our child. This frustrated me as I really was giving all that I could.”

The man has decided to invest the majority of his winnings, with his children’s education his top priority. He told Ithuba he plans to buy a house in which his children can live comfortably.

He also said he wanted to spend part of his winnings to help homeless people in East London as part of giving back.

“I feel honoured that finally I will be able to do much more than just give a R5 coin to the homeless,” he said. 

Ithuba spokesperson Busisiwe Msizi said the man had received trauma counselling and financial advice, which was offered to all winners of R50,000 and above.

“He spent a lot of time with the financial adviser - more than most of our winners usually do. The feedback we received was that he had many questions and wanted to thoroughly understand the magnitude of his winnings and how he could preserve his new wealth,” she said.

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