Uyo – Mr Ubong Edet with ticket number S/N SS015000151540 and Pastor Surplus Akan- whose ticket number was S/N SS015008038841 on Tuesday emerged winners in the first “Win a Trip to Israel” raffle draw held in Uyo.
Gov. Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom, who picked the two tickets after launching the raffle draw, bought 15, 500 tickets for the 31 Local Government Areas of the state.
Emmanuel said that each local government would share 500 tickets, to enable those who cannot afford the cost of pilgrimage to Israel, to benefit from the draw.
Emmanuel said that the “Win a Trip to Israel” was a laudable programme as it would help government to withdraw from sponsorship of intending pilgrims.
He noted that government alone would not be able to sponsor Christians on pilgrimage, adding that the lottery was a welcome development.
“You know Government alone cannot do everything; so we welcome the programme.
“We will try as much as possible to encourage Christians to go on pilgrimage. In pilgrimage, you will learn a whole lot of lessons.”
He thanked the organisers for bringing the programme first to Akwa Ibom, and intending pilgrims to uplift their spiritual lives and be good ambassadors of the country.
Speaking with the News Agency Nigeria (NAN) later, one of the winners, Akan, said he borrowed the N500 from one his pastors as he had no money on him.
Akan said he was overwhelmed by the blessings of God bestowed on him today.
“I am so happy; I could not believe it; to God be the Glory. I did not come with any kobo in my pocket today.
“A pastor friend of mine lent me the N500 to buy the ticket. I am very happy to be among the winners today,” Akan said.
NAN reports that the lottery was powered by “Give ‘N’ Take”, in collaboration with the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC). (NAN)