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ODA chair releases Lemley statement

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The acting chair of the London 2012 Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), Sir Roy McNulty, has released a statement denying claims made by the former chair, Jack Lemley, regarding the rising costs surrounding the Olympic Park in Stratford site.

Lemley resigned in October, reportedly due to members of the ODA’s board forcing culture secretary Tessa Jowell to sack him, otherwise they’d issue a vote of no confidence in him.

Lemley later claimed in the media that the government ignored his repeated warnings over rising costs and land contamination at the Olympic Park site in Stratford.

Sir Roy has said that the ODA board does not accept the “version of events” that Lemley has set out.

He said: “The Stratford site is complex, and much of the land will need remediating before construction. Mr Lemley has expressed his frustration with the Compulsory Purchase Order process for the Olympic Park site. This was known from the very start of the bid process. We, however, will not ride roughshod over local communities.

“At the September board meeting, chaired by Mr Lemley, there was a detailed presentation from these contractors. They indicated that levels of contamination assessed to date are in line with expectations and that the time allowed for remediation appears to be adequate. At the same meeting, Mr Lemley registered some of his concerns but admitted he had not seen or read any of the data or reports from the contractors.”

Sir Roy added: “As has been widely acknowledged, the financing requirement for the overall programme will be higher for reasons that have been explained. Mr Lemley will know that costs have not been rising exponentially.”

According to The Daily Telegraph, Lemley received a £150,000 payoff, which was meant to include a gagging clause.

Speaking to the newspaper about the reported payoff deal, London Mayor Ken Livingstone, said: “The capacity of the human mind to self-deceive is unlimited. If it were up to me, I would urgently sue him and ask for the money back.

“But I would suspect that the fees in the American courts would greatly outweigh the sums we would gain, so it is probably not worth the hassle." Details: www.london2012.org

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The acting chair of the London 2012 Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), Sir Roy McNulty, has released a statement denying claims made by the former chair, Jack Lemley, regarding the rising costs surrounding the Olympic Park in Stratford site.
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