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UAE expat was helping a stranger when he won $1 million

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Abu Dhabi resident Mohammed Shafique was helping a stranger on the road when he got the best surprise of his life. He won the $1-million jackpot in the latest Dubai Duty Free (DDF) Millennium Millionaire and Finest Surprise Draw.

“The man lost his phone so he had stopped me for assistance. While I was engrossed in calming the distressed man, I received a call from one of the DDF officials informing me that I won,” Shafique said.

“A part of me wanted to believe the news but I had to ask the official to prove that he was not some prankster. He assured me of his genuineness and in turn asked me for my ticket number. Though I didn’t have the ticket with me at that time, I remembered the number to be 4422.”

The 48-year-old Pakistani expat had purchased his DDF ticket online on September 10.

After the call, he headed straight home and broke the news to his wife. “When I told my wife, she got emotional. To verify what I had heard, I logged on to the DDF Facebook page and I could see my name streaming online. At that point I was convinced that I had, in fact, won the prize.”

A UAE resident since he was 16, Shafique has seven children and runs a property management company in Abu Dhabi.

“Two of my daughters are studying in Canada and my youngest is three years old and her schooling has just begun. Therefore, I will use a significant portion of this money for my children’s education,” said the expat, who hails from Lahore, Pakistan.

“A part of it will also go into my business and last but not the least, I want to donate a significant sum towards philanthropic purposes. God has been so benevolent towards me, and I want to share this joy with the less privileged.”

The last time Shafique bought a DDF ticket was around four years ago. This time, however, he had a strange inkling that he would win. “I don’t know how to explain this feeling, but somewhere deep down, I had a strong hunch that I might win this time,” he said.

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