Dublin City Council has said it wants an independent review of all aspects of the event licensing process surrounding the Garth Brooks concerts.
The local authority issued a press statement in which it said it wanted to clarify issues regarding whether city CEO Owen Keegan had told Croke Park stadium director Peter McKenna as far back as early February that the five shows would go ahead.
Mr McKenna said he was prepared to swear an affidavit that in the conversation he was assured the shows would be licensed but in the statement issued yesterday, Dublin City Council said: “In this conversation, Owen Keegan reiterated his position that the city council is supportive of special events and concerts in Croke Park. However, no assurance was given, or indeed could be given at that stage, that all five proposed concerts would be licensed.
“The lodgement of an event licence application initiates a formal statutory process on which the decision is made. In this instance the application was lodged on April 17 and was determined on July 3.”
According to the statement: “Dublin City Council would welcome an independent, impartial review of all aspects of the event licencing process pertaining to the Garth Brooks concerts.”
The furore has not eased despite today marking two weeks since the council’s original decision to license just three of the shows.
Promoter Peter Aiken yesterday told the committee that the ship carrying the stage equipment for the Croke Park shows is currently in the Belgium port city of Antwerp.
GAA director general Paraic Duffy said that “at no point” had the GAA been alerted about the need to have a contingency plan in the event that not all five concerts would be licensed, while Paraic Duffy also said that DCC citing the “unprecedented nature” of the concerts did not mean they should not have been allowed proceed, adding: “Saying yes today does not mean you cannot say no tomorrow.”
He also hit out at the “orchestrated campaign” of allegedly fraudulent submissions objecting to the concerts.
Mr Aiken revealed that he has lost “a seven-figure sum” as a result of the concert cancellations, while Brooks has lost “millions”. “The person I feel most sad for is Garth Brooks — they will never see the show he was going to put on,” Mr Aiken said.
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