Jonathan O'Brien TD calls for Lottery operator to release value of unclaimed prizes
Sinn Féin Junior Public Expenditure and Reform (PER) spokesperson, Jonathan O’Brien TD, has called on Premier Lotteries Ireland (PLI) who operate the National Lottery, to release the figure of the accumulated value of unclaimed prizes since it took over running of the Lottery.
Deputy O’Brien said:
“Today I pushed the Minister for PER to go back and request that PLI release this figure.
"As part of the privatisation of the Lottery the new operator was allowed keep the unclaimed prizes to offset their own cost base.
"This was a change from the previous regime where unclaimed prizes were put back into the prize pool for players.
"The fact that the government of the day signed up to a contract which allowed the new operator to keep for themselves, effectively, the unclaimed prizes is very disturbing.
"To rub salt in the wound the Department agreed a specific clause allowing PLI keep this data secret.
"The Minister couldn’t confirm that the Regulator herself even knows the figure.
"So what we have is a deal where the punter no longer gets to play for the unclaimed prizes and we no longer have the right to even know how worse off the players are because there is a secrecy clause built in.
"I know the Lotto was sold off in a hurry but it seems major mistakes were made possible worthy of investigation by PAC or another body."