Sara Netanyahu Summoned Me at Night to Heat Up Soup, Ex-employee Testifies

Former maintenance worker testifies against Netanyahus in lawsuit for unlawful termination; testimony includes the soup incident and a former cook’s allegations that the PM’s wife hit her.

Olivier Fitoussi

A former maintenance man at the prime minister’s official residence in Jerusalem testified Sunday that Sara Netanyahu called him from his home at midnight to heat up a bowl of soup for her.

“The prime minister was in meetings at home until 12:30. The lady was upstairs and for a few hours I didn’t hear from her. When the prime minister finished his meeting I asked if I could go if I had finished and he said, ‘Yes, go. As far as I’m concerned you’re free.’ At 12:30 she called me back with no justification,” Guy Eliyahu told the District Labor Court in Jerusalem.

Eliyahu is suing the Prime Minister’s Office for unlawful termination and an insulting attitude toward him. Eliyahu, like the residence’s former maintenance chief, Meni Naftali, claims he was promised a permanent position. When he discovered that the deputy director of the Prime Minister’s office, Ezra Saidoff, did not intend to give it to him, he left.

Eliyahu also told the court about an incident in which a former cook at the residence, Eti Haim, fainted. “Eti and I were working in the kitchen and serving things. Eti was preparing the food on the stove and the lady walked in and started shouting, ‘Why don’t you serve them things, be quick, people are hungry and thirsty.’ I stood to the side and watched. Eti didn’t answer her. Right when she left, she said she had pains in her chest and a few minutes later I heard her fall.”

Haim, who testified Sunday on behalf of Eliyahu, told the court that Netanyahu had struck her. “She asked me to bring her a glass of wine. When I opened the door she hit me on my arm. I said to her, ‘You raised a hand to me’ She said to me, ‘Go wash your hands,’ and I told her that my hands were clean. She said that I had a lot of nerve and I should go wash my hands After that I was asked to write her a letter of apology. She said that the condition for my continuing to work there was that I write the apology.”

Sara Netanyahu and Saidoff are scheduled to testify on September 29.