JERUSALEM (Sep. 20)
President Zalman Shazar will personally open the celebrations for former Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion’s 80th birthday, October 1.
The President will go with his wife and members of the official celebration committee to Mr. Ben-Gurion’s residence at Sde Boker in the Negev to convey the best wishes of the nation to Mr. Ben-Gurion. The President and the committee members will arrive at Sde Boker on September 28, the eve of Succot. They will attend an open-air rally at Negev College at which the former Premier will be one of the speakers.
Members of the Cabinet also will travel to Sde Boker to convey the greetings of the Government. However, because of the strained relations between Mr. Ben-Gurion and Premier Levi Eshkol, the Premier will not be a member of the Cabinet delegation nor does he plan to send a personal letter to Mr. Ben-Gurion.
Mass rallies will be held in Haifa and Ramat Gan, but it was not known whether Mr. Ben-Gurion would attend either assembly. Haifa Mayor Abba Khoushi said the city would stage a large municipal celebration and that he would meet with the former Premier and invite him to attend. Mayor Avraham Krinitzi of Ramat Gan said he was organizing a “Ben-Gurion Evening” in the city’s National Park. He said he expected a turnout of about 10,000 for that rally. Beersheba has offered Mr. Ben-Gurion an honorary citizenship on the occasion of his birthday.