National Lottery director plans to quit Oflot following reorganisation

John Stoker, director general of the National Lottery, is to quit regulator Oflot after its reorganisation at the beginning of next year.

Stoker, who took charge of regulating the Lottery after the resignation of the controversial director general Peter Davis last February, will leave Oflot next spring. He returns to the Department of Transport, Environment & the Regions, where he worked before joining Oflot in January 1997 as deputy director general.

Oflot is to be restructured early in the new year in line with the new National Lottery Act, following recommendations by Culture Secretary Chris Smith. Instead of having a director general in charge of appointing the Lottery operator and regulating it, there will be a National Lottery Commission with five part-time commissioners, including a chairman and a chief executive.

An Oflot spokeswoman says: “John will see the new committee in through the period of the handover, but he has decided not to apply for the chief executive’s role.”

Davis resigned following the High Court action which found that Richard Branson had not libelled Guy Snowden, chairman of G-Tech and part of the Camelot consortium. Branson had claimed Snowden tried to bribe him to withdraw from bidding for the running of the Lottery. Stoker was later promoted from deputy to director general.

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