No lottery surcharge for Queen's jubilee

22nd April 2005, Comments 0 comments

22 April 2005, AMSTERDAM — Participants in three lotteries for the Queen Beatrix jubilee draw on 25 May will not pay a surcharge to fund a cash donation to charity to mark the monarch's 25th year of reign.

22 April 2005

AMSTERDAM — Participants in three lotteries for the Queen Beatrix jubilee draw on 25 May will not pay a surcharge to fund a cash donation to charity to mark the monarch's 25th year of reign.

The lotteries Postcodeloterij, BankGiroloterij and the Sponsorloterij said on Friday that a large increase in participants this year had made the surcharge superfluous.

Outrage greeted revelations at the end of March that participants would be automatically charged an unauthorised fee of EUR 5.25 from their bank accounts to fund the jubilee present.

Thousands of people were opposed to the surcharge but were forced to ring a paid telephone number to block the payment. The three lotteries later set up a toll free number at the insistence of Justice Minister Piet Hein Donner.

However, the lotteries attracted an extra 350,000 participants in the first few months of this year. The BankGiroloterij collected the highest number of new participants, followed by the Sponsorloterij and the Postcodeloterij.

"Based on this growth, there will be sufficient money available this year for the jubilee present," a spokesman of the charity group Goede Doelen Loterijen said.

Queen Beatrix ascended the Dutch throne in 1980 and jubilee celebrations will kickstart with a concert on Dam Square on 29 April. The Queen will visit The Hague and Scheveningen on Queen's Day (30 April).

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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