A man in southern China who won just under 220 million yuan (US$31 million) in the lottery said he had not told his wife and child because he was worried the money could make them arrogant and lazy.
The man, identified by the pseudonym Li, bought 40 lottery tickets for 80 yuan in Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, and every ticket contained the same seven numbers.
According to a report in Nanning Evening News, all seven numbers hit, equalling a payout of 5.48 million yuan per ticket, which means the total arrived at just under 220 million yuan.
The man went to the Guangxi Welfare Lottery Distribution Centre in the region’s capital city of Nanning to receive his prize money on October 24. Li also donated 5 million yuan to charity.
Li dressed in a cartoon costume during the cheque presentation ceremony, a creative way to protect winners’ identities.
Although he was thrilled about winning the money, the man said he was trying to contain his excitement and had not told anyone, including his family.
“I have not told my wife or kid. I am concerned that they might feel superior to other people and will not work or study hard in future,” he was quoted as saying.
Li will take home 171 million yuan after donating the 5 million yuan to charity and being taxed 43 million yuan.
Li said he is a “loyal fan” of the lottery and had bought tickets regularly for over a decade. He said he had chosen the same seven numbers over the past few years because they “looked pleasing”. This time, the loyalty to those numbers paid off massively.
“I only won a few dozen yuan in the past,” Li was quoted as saying. “I regard buying the lottery as a hobby, and my family does not care. Plus, I do not spend much money on it, and the lottery provides a ray of hope for me.”
That ray of hope appears to have turned into reality, and Li said he did not sleep when he found out he won the jackpot on October 21, a Friday.
He took a train to Nanning early the next morning and stayed in a hotel for the weekend before picking up the prize money at the Guangxi Welfare Lottery Distribution Centre on October 24.
“I slept in the hotel during those two days. I did not go outside that weekend because I did not want to lose my tickets,” said Li.
When asked how he would spend the money, Li said: “I haven’t decided yet, and I will take some time to plan how to use the money,” he said.
Despite not telling his wife, the lottery money will be considered a joint asset between the married couple.
A lawyer named Fu Jian said that Li might violate the Chinese Marriage Law by “infringing on his wife’s right to know”.