$22 million Lotto Winner from Christchurch, New Zealand

A few weeks ago, Big Wednesday, one of the largest lotto jackpots in New Zealand (22 million NZ dollars) was struck by a single ticket purchased in Christchurch, a city devastated and damaged by a severe earthquake in February 2011 killing 185 people. The country was pleased that a person from Christchurch was the winner.  However, the winning ticket holder failed to turn up to claim the prize.  It is known that sometimes, winners of large lotto prizes go into hiding but this was different. It soon became clear that there was something wrong. Not claiming the prize of course means lost interest and on such a large sum this could easily add up to a lot of money. Who would let this slip? (A friend apparently told the winner that the lotto was claimed and hence they didn’t bother to check their ticket)


Greenpeace challenging the Arctic oil Drilling

New Zealand is world famous for its clean green, nuclear-free image. It’s always in the headlines and recently, two New Zealander Greenpeace activists were amongst those captured by the Russians accused of piracy as they were protesting Artic oil drilling.  So what is the connection between New Zealand’s clean green, pristine image, caring for environment and the lotto?  Caring for its people!


Tracing the Winner of The New Zealand Lotto

The NZ lotto authorities did something extraordinary. They decided to track the winning ticket holder. Using information from the kiosk that sold the winning ticket, such as time sold, closed circuit TV footage, and other information sources that they were not privileged to disclose due to privacy laws, they managed to track the winner.  It is broadly speculated that the authorities could have even accessed Vehicle Authority records to trace car registration numbers and car park videos to trace the winner. However, that is not important in this review.  What is important is the fact that they cared, and traced the winner. New Zealand’s opposition to the decimation of whales in the southern oceans and their fight against Artic oil drilling and protection of other endangered species firmly entrenches them as a Nation that cares.   A Nation making a big positive impact in the world and setting an example in their own country.


What would you Do?


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