Anti-mafia taskforce for Expo

After last week’s arrests

Prime Minister Matteo Renzi is preparing a government intervention to save Expo 2015, cancel the delays and avoid further arrests, reported Italian media on Sunday.

“We need a new task force,” leading daily La Repubblica quoted the PM. “This time not just technicians. I’m thinking instead of legal support for the Exhibition to defend the transparency of all the next steps. That’s the real help we can give the commissioner.”

Renzi was speaking at the opening of Florence’s Maggio Musicale festival. His remarks came as the dust was still settling after last week’s arrest of seven high-level figures – including Expo general manager Angelo Paris – on corruption charges.

The plan should include a sort of anti-corruption squad to watch over the organising structure, check the next moves in preventive mode to avoid further errors, and avoid payoffs slipping through the net, the daily continued. A pool of lawyers, accounts magistrates and contract experts should collaborate with the professionals already at work. Expo cannot fail and work can’t stop again, because there’s only a year to go, La Repubblica opined.

“When there are major interventions, large-scale initiatives, if there’s something which isn’t going right, if there are problems with the law, we should stop the people responsible, not the whole work, Renzi concluded.