Lotto jackpot winners begin claiming prizes | Inquirer News
ONE OF 433 LUCKY BETTORS TRAVELED FOR 10 HOURS

Lotto jackpot winners begin claiming prizes

/ 05:45 AM October 04, 2022
MONEY IN THEIR POCKETS At least 50 of 433 winners in the Grand Lotto 6/55 draw on Saturday gather at the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) building in Mandaluyong City on Monday to claim their share of the P236-million jackpot. STORY: Lotto jackpot winners begin claiming prizes

MONEY IN THEIR POCKETS | At least 50 of 433 winners in the Grand Lotto 6/55 draw on Saturday gather at the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) building in Mandaluyong City on Monday to claim their share of the P236-million jackpot. (Photo from the Facebook account of the PCSO)

MANILA, Philippines — Some of the 433 winners in the Grand Lotto 6/55 draw on Saturday are now claiming their share of the P236-million jackpot.

Their collective stroke of luck has generated controversy since it is rare to have that many winners in the state lottery. Furthermore, they won through a combination of numbers that happened to be all divisible by a single digit, in this case, 9.

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On Monday, around 50 of those winners were seen lining up at the headquarters of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) in Mandaluyong City.

The PCSO even posted on its Facebook page photos of them at a waiting area, although some of those photos were blurred.

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Six of those winners obliged the agency and posed individually as they held their lucky tickets close to the camera.

Some of those photos were blurred, or the eyes of those bettors were hidden with black strips to conceal their identities.

Number patterns

The first to show up at the PCSO office said he commuted for 10 hours to claim his P545,034.64—the cash prize that each of the 433, dividing the jackpot, will receive. Their share is subject to a 20-percent tax.

“I thank the PCSO that many of us were blessed with the jackpot…,” that winner said when interviewed by the lottery agency.

He also said he had been counting on the multiples-of-9 combination for years, in the hope of someday winning.

“I’ve always been betting on the pattern 9, pattern 8, pattern 7 and pattern 6 for many years, and I am thankful that this time, I won,” he said.

PCSO General Manager Mel Robles welcomed him and the other early birds who arrived at the agency soon after and later posed with them.

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Unclaimed

But going by its experience, the PCSO may also anticipate that not all the winners will claim their share.

The agency had earlier disclosed that three cash prizes of P18 million each from a 6/45 draw in July 2021, had remained unclaimed until July 26 this year, the deadline for getting those prizes.

Winners are usually given 365 days to claim their prize before it is forfeited and reverted to the agency’s charity fund, which is used to provide medical assistance to qualified individuals seeking such aid.

The PCSO said the winning tickets were bought in Batangas City and Muntinlupa City.

A jackpot of P62 million was also won on Feb. 18 by a bettor from Baguio City, but that money has yet to be claimed.

Other cash prizes—such as a P23.7-million jackpot from the 6/42 draw on March 15 and P38 million from the 6/45 Megalotto draw on Aug. 17—have yet to be claimed.

Luck, after all, may also be a matter of choice to those winners.

Or as Robles put it, by way of congratulating Saturday’s winners, “Lottery is a game of chance, nothing is definite and it is uncontrollable.”

Odds of winning

According to Guido David, a fellow of the OCTA Research group, the odds of 433 people winning Saturday’s jackpot are one in almost 29 million.

“I think people don’t have a problem with more people winning. It’s just that the outcome itself does not follow probabilistic expectations,” he said in a tweet on Monday.

“It would be the same thing if slot machines in a casino hit the jackpot successively. The casino would investigate… any anomaly,” he added.

Assuming 10 million bets were placed on Saturday’s draw, David said, “[t]his gives us the probability of 433 winners out of 10 million bets to be 1.87e-1224.”

“That is 1 out of 1 followed by 1,224 zeros,” he added.

“To compare, a googol (mathematical term for a vast number) has 100 zeros. The number of molecules in the known universe has 80 zeros. The age of the known universe, in seconds, is about 4.32e17 (17 zeros),” David also said.

Still, “the winning combination, divisible by 9, could mean more people bet on it,” he said.

—REPORTS FROM DONA Z. PAZZIBUGAN, ABBY BOISER AND INQUIRER RESEARCH 

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TAGS: Grand Lotto winners, Mel Robles, Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO)
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