JNF CHAIR EFI STENZLER.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Jewish National Fund/Keren Kayemet LeYisrael chairman Effi Stenzler emerged as
one of the victors of Monday’s split in Labor, when his two challengers
announced that they were dropping out of the race against him.
spent huge sums of his own money on legal challenges against former Labor
chairman Ehud Barak in an effort to keep his post. Barak attempted to have
Stenzler replaced, first by Agriculture Minister Shalom Simhon, then by Deputy
Defense Minister Matan Vilna’i.
Vilna’i was expected to face off against
Stenzler in a Labor Executive committee vote later this month, while Simhon
planned to continue to seek the post in the courts. Now that both challengers
have left the race, Stenzler is expected to be given the post unopposed in an
upcoming meeting of the Labor Executive Committee.
“Barak tried for more
than a year to appoint his allies to the job, despite the rulings of the courts
and Labor institutions,” Stenzler said. “The undemocratic attempts by Barak to
take the KKL chairmanship from Labor have failed. The Labor Party has deep roots
in Israel and the KKL, and the KKL will remain under Labor’s control as it has
The effect of the split in Labor on the KKL will also
impact Kadima, which received the honorary co-chairmanship of the organization
via the agreements of the World Zionist Organization. Kadima leader Tzipi Livni
appointed MK Eli Aflalo to the post, but he has not been able to assume it,
because Stenzler’s dispute with Simhon had not been resolved.
soon be able to receive the post and quit the Knesset. He will be replaced in
the Knesset by the next person on the Kadima list, Doron Avital, an academic and
former commander of the IDF’s General Staff Reconnaissance Unit (Sayeret