Demand for inquiry into stadium failures

Netanya council's opposition leader, Herzl Keren, is demanding that a public committee be set up to examine the city's and the building contractor's alleged failures in constructing a municipal sports stadium, reports Keren said that large sums of money were involved in the project and the public was entitled to "clear answers" as to what had occurred over the past three years to delay the work so badly. According to the report, Keren said that according to the contract between the city and the Ramet construction company, the stadium was supposed to have been completed by July 2008. But only one-third had been built until now, and even in the best possible scenario there was "no chance" that the stadium would be inaugurated before 2011. Keren said that both city officials and the building contractor had "failed the test of results" and had not met the construction schedule detailed in the contract. Keren also said that at a city council meeting to discuss the issue last month, Mayor Miriam Fierberg-Ikar and the councilor in charge of the project, Eli Dallal, had tried to "explain and excuse" why the city and the contractor had not met the schedule, and why the city was not guilty of any neglect and did not need to have any public committee examine the problems in the stadium's construction. "Those involved in the failure are not able and not entitled to examine themselves," Keren said. Keren said the issue had to be examined and a public committee should be set up to do so, made up of two coalition councilors and one opposition councilor who would present their findings to the council within 90 days. "Because we are speaking about a public project and especially about public funds, it is the right of the public to know what occurred during the course of the last three years around the building of the stadium and who is responsible for the fact that the stadium has not been built in accordance with the schedule fixed in the contract," Keren said. No response to the demand was reported.