** Update, March 8th 2012 – news reports have it that the Ministry of Culture have been completely exonerated in how they managed applications for the restoration work at the Colosseum. The authorities are satisified that there was full transparency and nothing underhand – so it’s now a matter of just waiting a few days for work to begin, surely? Ho ho ho.
** Update, mid February 2012 – the latest in this stop start dance is that the contract has been approved – again – and the Union has removed their objection. Codacons, however, have not. So it’s a green light. Perhaps. Maybe. Full steam ahead. Sort of.
Ah well. Time to back-pedal. Again.
We wrote yesterday that all barriers had been removed and that it was green lights all the way for the long-awaited restoration work to begin on the Colosseum in Rome. The Mayor of Rome was delighted that work could finally begin in March 2012.
This state of play lasted not even a full day. Work will not now begin in March. Nothing will happen for at least 60 days as CODACONS, the coordinating body of Italian Consumer Associations, has objected to irregularities in the controversial private-money deal between the Italian State and Diego dell Valle, so-called ‘Italian shoe magnate’ (background here).
CODACONS, in an ‘Antitrust’ stance, allude to a ‘series of distortions’ in the already-inked deal and express concerns that there are not enough guarantees built-in as regards planning and completion of the work. So it’s back to the drawing board. The Mayor is not happy, and Francesco Giro, former Undersecretary for Cultural Heritage, goes further:
There will be no restoration. The Colosseum will fall to pieces. The ‘nays’ have won, rejecting the idea of sponsorship by a private company.
Watch this space.