POSTED: April 7th 2010

Flooding not a problem when 2016 Olympics come to Rio, promises Lula

President Lula: work in progress /
President Lula: work in progress /

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT / Sports Features Communications

RIO DE JANEIRO, Apr 07: President Lula of Brazil has promised that the drainage problems which contributed to the carnage caused by flooding in Rio de Janeiro will be resolved before both the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games.

The death toll from the flooding and infrastructural damage caused by heavy rains - which began on Monday afternoon and lasted most of the next 24 hours - has reached 95.

The pitch at the Maracana stadium, which will host the World Cup Final as well as the Olympic Opening and Closing Ceremonies, was left under water with its dressing rooms flooded out. This forced a venue switch for the midweek Copa Libertadores tie between Flamengo and Universidad de Chile.

However, the greatest problems were suffered in the poorest suburbs and in the city’s notorious favelas with more than 1,400 people left homeless, according to Mayor Edoardo Paes. Banks and shops were closed in the city centre and none of the city’s schools are expected to reopen until later this week.

President Lula insisted: “Rio de Janeiro will be ready to welcome the world of football in four years’ time and then the Olimpics. Plans are already in hand to ensure that the problems which were exacerbated by these freak storms cannot be repeated.”

Keywords · Lula · Rio de Janeiro · 2016 Olympic Games

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