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Belarus President urges to rebuild Dinamo stadium by late 2014

MINSK, 5 November (BelTA) – The Minsk-based stadium Dinamo should be rebuilt by the end of 2014, said President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko at the government session held on 5 November to discuss the stadium’s reconstruction.

The Belarus President said he wanted all the reconstruction work done within two years. Instead of a super stadium Dinamo should become a compact European level sport facility. “We don’t want to create a super stadium like that one in London or the Bird’s Nest that [Vice Premier Anatoly] Tozik supervised in China. We don’t need something like that. We need a compact European level stadium for 40,000-45,000 seats. No need to try to impress anyone. We are not that rich to waste money on something glamorous. It should be a functional, beautiful stadium. The historical image that we have agreed on should be preserved,” said the head of state.

Alexander Lukashenko stated that unfortunately the reconstruction had not started yet although a foreign contractor had been chosen. “As far as I understand, the decision to let a foreign company rebuild the stadium was not completely well thought out,” said the President.

He added: “There is nothing wrong with foreign companies taking part in the tender to choose the main company in charge of the reconstruction. However, I am told that after the tender discussions are still in progress about how the stadium should be reconstructed and how much it will cost. These things are inadmissible. It is either the continuation of red-tape practices in the city hall, which owns the stadium, or some other problems are being created. I’d like to get them addressed at today’s session,” said the head of state.

The President demanded to get down to the stadium’s reconstruction right away. “The stadium’s reconstruction has to start tomorrow instead of March, April or May. There is a lot of work involving disassembly and the removal of waste. You are lucky if you manage it by spring. The time will be used to complete the design, to be more precise, if we find a normal company, the existing models of the stadium will be tied down”.

Alexander Lukashenko stressed once again that the work should be performed faster: “Three years is out of the question. We need the stadium reopened in late 2014 or, better yet, by 7 November as is the custom”.

Alexander Lukashenko remarked he had no complaints about keeping trade premises opened after the reconstruction. Yet he said he wanted a clarification regarding how the rent collected for letting trade premises at the Dinamo stadium had been used. “I’ve given instructions to the State Control Committee Chairman to have a look at what is going on at the stadium. The key thing is that we had a huge marketplace that, according to my data, earned considerable financial sums. The traditional questions are: where is the money, how much money was there, and where did it go?” said Alexander Lukashenko. He demanded that the participants of the government session should give answers to these questions.