Minister issues an unusual apology for problems with arts festival

The minister of Cultura y Juventud and her entire staff have issued an apology to the public, artists and community members for the fiasco that was the Festival International de las Artes Friday and over the weekend.

The minister, Elizabeth Fonseca, said she was appointing a committee to see what happened. The apology extends to Acosta, Aserrí, Alajuelita and Desamparados where a number of outdoor events that had been scheduled did not take place.

The ministry had problems with a contract with a sound and light company. Friday the Contraloría General de la República, the agency that must pass on government contracts, said that the sound and light contract was rejected because ministry workers used the incorrect budget account for payment.

The festival attracts a lot of out-of-town and foreign performers, who had be be rescheduled.

The ministry ended up putting more activities in the Centro Nacional de Arte, its complex on Avenida 7.

The minister in a release promised that all the scheduled activities eventually would be performed. The problems resulted in financial loss for those who were prepared to provide food services at the four cantons festival sites as well as any events for which admission was to have been charged.

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