Shaul Mofaz 311 (R).
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Kadima leader Tzipi Livni enabled financial misconduct in the party that has
resulted in investigations by police and State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss,
her party rivals MKs Shaul Mofaz and Avi Dichter charged on Thursday night in a
stormy meeting of the Kadima faction.
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Livni convened the faction to
discuss Lindenstrauss’s November 3 decision to fine Kadima NIS 570,000 for
failing to present a complete financial report or disclose full information
about its income and expenditure.
Lindenstrauss criticized the party for
overpaying suppliers, giving out illegal bonuses, and failing to insist on the
repayment of loans. He singled out Livni for hosting a NIS 57,000 private dinner
for 60 guests at her Tel Aviv home at a cost of NIS 950 per plate.
has blamed Kadima’s financial misdeeds on the party’s former treasurer, Itzik
Hadad, who was arrested last month on suspicion of bribery, fraud and breach of
trust. But Mofaz and Dichter said the buck must stop with the leader of the
“The responsibility is yours and you must take it,” Mofaz told
Livni in the meeting. “There are problems here with unethical leadership.
I am sick of hearing statements like I didn’t know, I didn’t hear, I didn’t
There must be transparency rather than hiding behind absurd claims
of lacking knowledge.”
Dichter called the comptroller’s report “just the
tip of the iceberg” of financial misconduct by the party’s
leadership. Dichter said Lindenstrauss did not even get to the hundreds
of thousands of shekels in bonuses Livni paid to the party’s director-general
“It’s no secret that I have been worried for three years
about the appointments Livni made in the party,” Mofaz said. “We must put a stop
to this. After I am elected party chairman, Kadima will look
Mofaz said Livni failed in running the party and the
opposition in the Knesset. He called upon her to advance the party’s leadership
primary and said a majority of its 28 lawmakers agreed with him.
Marina Solodkin, who unlike Mofaz and Dichter is not running against Livni for
party leader, said she was concerned about the comptroller’s report and that the
party’s oversight rules needed to change. But unlike Mofaz and Dichter, she cast
blame for the party’s irregularities on Livni’s predecessor, former prime
minister Ehud Olmert.
A Livni spokesman responded that Mofaz and Dichter tried unsuccessfully
to make an uproar and the other MKs chose not to cooperate with those
acting out of their own narrow political interests and not the good of
The spokesman denied Dichter's claim about bonuses given out by Livni.
"This party did something rare in politics," the Livni spokesman said.
"It investigated itself, produced grave findings and brought them at its
own initiative to the comptroller and the police. This was the right
thing to do even though it led to the negative report of the
comptroller. Those are the facts and those who care about the facts
understand that we did the right thing."