A former mayoral candidate in Summerside, Prince Edward Island, Canada, spoke out on Friday, about the city paying more than one million dollars, for a concert that never happened!
Elmer Williams, who ran for mayor in the November 2010 election, called for a full investigation into why the city paid $1.3 million, for a supposed official tribute concert to Michael. It was to have kicked off a world tour and featured superstars, such as Beyonce and Usher.
“The maniacs may be coming to Summerside to join the lunatics,” he said. “We’re in trouble. I can’t believe what they’re doing.”
Summerside said it wired $650,000 to U.S. promoter StarLink Productions on two separate occasions — in July 2009 and March 2010. The second payment was sent despite growing doubts that the concert would proceed.
Williams wants the mayor to find out what went wrong. He said the city should consider calling in outside help to examine how so much money was spent on nothing. “I can’t believe the money wasn’t placed in trust,” he said.
Williams said the incident had made Summerside a laughing stock. He ran against Basil Stewart in the fall of 2010, but the failed concert did not become an issue because details had not been released.
“I knew something was wacky, but they didn’t want to talk about it,” Williams said. “They knew back in April that there was nobody coming to town and they would not talk about it. They wouldn’t bring it out in the open.” Williams pointed to the city’s statement of claim, filed in January, in its lawsuit against the California concert booker.
“In reality,” reads the statement of claim filed with a U.S. court, “the ‘Michael Jackson Tribute Show,’ was, from start to finish, an elaborate fraud.”
The statement says on May 7th 2010, the city had notified the promoter it was in breach of agreement and began requesting its $1.3 million be refunded.
But Stewart was quoted in the ‘Journal Pioneer’ on August 17th, saying that negotiations for the concert were still underway and that it would happen in the fall, or the summer of 2011. Stewart later said, that in August, he did believe negotiations were still ongoing. He said, he can’t remember when he was told by staff that there was a breach of agreement, and attempts were being made to try to recover the $1.3 million.