​General director of Vietnam’s American-style lottery firm Vietlott resigns

He was a senior official at scandal-hit PetroVietnam (PVN) 

Tong Quoc Truong, former general director of Vietlott. Photo: Vietlott

The general director of Vietnam Computerized Lottery Company (Vietlott), Tong Quoc Truong, has resigned due to “personal reasons,” a source from the Ministry of Finance said on Saturday.

His deputy Nguyen Thanh Dam has been put in charge of the company until a new general director is selected.

A source from the Ministry of Finance said on Saturday afternoon that the ministry had accepted the letter of resignation from Truong, who had stopped holding the top position at Vietlott since October 1 owing to “personal reasons.”

Vietlott, which has received an enormous amount of media attention since introducing the U.S.-style Mega 6/45 computerized lottery in July last year, is fully owned by Vietnam’s finance ministry, with technical support from a Malaysian firm.

The lottery is a cooperative effort between Vietnam’s state-run lottery company Vietlott and an indirect subsidiary of Malaysia-based firm Berjaya Corp Bhd, the recipient of an 18-year investment license to operate the computerized lottery in the country in January 2016.

The lottery’s minimum jackpot is VND12 billion (US$528,000), which is rolled over into subsequent drawings until a winner is found.

Dam, the deputy director of Vietlott, is taking the helm at the company for the time being until a decision on who would replace Truong is made next week, the source said.

Truong has been head of Vietlott since the company’s establishment in August 2012.

Prior to his appointment to the top position at the lottery company, Truong was head of the Investment and Development Division at Vietnam Oil and Gas Group, or PetroVietnam (PVN).

Truong was also general director at the PetroVietnam Finance Corporation (PVFC), a subsidiary of PVN, between 2007 and 2010.

PVN and its subsidiaries have been under legal scrutiny for economic mismanagement by its former executives that had resulted in enormous financial losses.

In a statement on September 29, the People’s Court of Hanoi sentenced former PVN chairman Nguyen Xuan Son to death for his wrongdoings leading to serious economic consequences and abuse of power to usurp assets.

Dinh La Thang, another former PVN chairman, was removed from the decision-making Politburo in May due to multiple financial violations he had committed when leading the oil and gas behemoth.

Thang was once secretary of the Ho Chi Minh City Party Committee but he was also stripped of the title in the same scandal.

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