Street Journal’s investigations have shown that a good number of youths in the Oyo State capital now seem to prefer playing lotto over working or attending schools. By 8.30 am, it is not uncommon to see youths gathered at designated lotto centres either checking results or investing in the game of chance.
At most lotto centres, the age range of customers range between 18 and 45 years and investigations have shown that it the game which has been christened “Baba ‘Jebu” has become a source of livelihood for most of the youths. Some would rather play the game and expect returns than entering any meaningful trade.
The game is played by arranging a series of numbers between 0 and 90, players win when the numbers arranged by an individual tally with those given by the company in charge of the game. Street Journal gathered that the winnings have made the game attractive to many people and they now follow it religiously. A regular player disclosed to Street Journal that he invested N 100 in his first game and he won N 2000. He disclosed that he took it more serious when he won N 8, 400 with another investment of N 100.
Street Journal also found out that players prefer some outlets over others. Another player disclosed that “any outlet where you see many people, just know that people win there often, hence the patronage.” It has however been discovered that most people spend only small percentages of their winnings as the bulk of such winnings are ploughed back into the game. The expectation of winning big has kept many in the lotto game and some have even ascribed some superstitious beliefs to it.
Some go as far as asking lunatics for numbers, as a lot of lotto players believe that mad men often give out winning numbers at certain times of the day.