A Bangladeshi car garage owner who moved to the UAE nearly 40 years ago told of his joy after scooping Dh10 million ($2.7m) in the Abu Dhabi Big Ticket draw.
Shahed Ahmed Moulvifaiz, 55, has bought lottery tickets for more than two decades, but never thought he would win the grand prize.
He lives in Al Ain with his son, 25, where they run their family business. His other children, aged 15 to 26, live with his wife in Bangladesh.
"Our lives are going to change," Mr Moulvifaiz told The National moments after being declared the winner during a live draw on Saturday night.
“Our car garage was able to put a roof over our heads, feed us and pay for my children’s education, but Dh10 million will change our lives now and give an even more comfortable living.”
Mr Moulvifaiz said he plans on expanding his business, buying a house in his home country and spending on his youngest son’s education.
He said that he kept purchasing tickets in the hope that he would strike it lucky.
“I thought maybe one day I would win Dh1 million or even half a million, but now I’m a multimillionaire,” said Mr Moulvifaiz, who was attending a customer at his garage when he received the call from the organisers.
Raman Nambiar Mohan, an Indian expat in Bahrain, was the Dh5 million winner in last night’s draw.
The Abu Dhabi Big Ticket has been operating since 1992 and was first established at the Abu Dhabi International Airport.
In January, an Indian expat in Oman won Dh20 million.
UAE residents have been getting richer through other raffle draws in the country, too.
Earlier this year, a Filipina won Dh1m after wiring her father Dh186 through Al Ansari Exchange.
Last week, an Indian worker who earns Dh3,000 per month, won Dh2 million in the Mahzooz weekly draw.