Friday, May 9th 2014 - 07:35 UTC

Chaos in Sao Paulo and Rio, as protestors take to the streets 35 days ahead of the Cup

Two of Brazil's major cities which will be hosting matches of the World Cup in 35 days time, were in chaos on Thursday because of protests from the Landless Peasants and Homeless Workers in Sao Paulo and a bus drivers' strike in Rio do Janeiro.

Landless and homeless march in Sao Paulo

Crowds of people at bus stops in Rio do Janeiro

Rousseff on a tour of unfinished stadiums agreed to meet protestors

 There were other transport stoppages in cities such as Belo Horizonte, (the third largest), in Florianopolis to the south and Belem to the north, both state capitals while street sweepers blocked the heart of Fortaleza.

The protests can be termed as a rehearsal of what can be expected between 12 June and 13 July as anticipated by social organizations that are condemning the billions invested in stadiums for the Cup while the country lacks basic services.

Federal Police, food industry workers among others have promised strikes and demonstrations during the month long event which is expected to attract over 600.000 tourist from overseas.

A similar situation to that a year ago during the Confederation Cup when hundreds of thousands of Brazilians took to the streets to demand better education, health care and transport services, and protests the lavish expenditure.

In Sao Paulo an estimated 1.500 families of Landless Peasants and Homeless Workers organized four different demonstrations simultaneously and later occupied the headquarters of some of Brazil's largest public works corporations.

“This is the beginning of the campaign ”World Cup without the people: I'm again protesting in the streets'“, said Guilherme Boulos the coordinator of the marches. ”We are going to hold weekly marches to protest the abuse and unpopular measures implemented under the excuse of the World Cup”.

The target of the marches on Thursday were the corporations that benefited from the construction of stadiums, such as Arena Corinthians, which will host the matches to be played in Sao Paulo.

The protests took place a few hours before the arrival of President Dilma Rousseff to the Corinthians Arena, but then calmed when the Brazilian leader agreed to talk with the landless and homeless representatives about government housing plans.

In Rio do Janeiro on the other hand chaos was caused by the surprise bus drivers' 24-hour strike demanding higher salaries which left tens of thousands condemned to walk back home. The bus drivers ignored the agreement reached by the union leaders with the local government and private companies.

The few buses that dared circulate were stoned while pickets at the parking lots blocked all activities. In total 345 buses were damaged according to police sources. The metro and trains had to reinforce services to satisfy the overflowing demand.

On Thursday also Amnesty International launched a world campaign in support of the right to free expression and to peaceful demonstrations during the World Cup.

AI said it was collecting signatures in twenty countries in support of a document to be presented to the Brazilian government requesting that demonstrations during the World Cup are not exposed to violent repression by police or special forces.

21 comments Feed

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1 Klingon (#) May 09th, 2014 - 11:17 am Report abuse
Looks like you will just have to be content to play football on your play station.
W.C is shaping up to be a disaster.. Lets hope Fifa learns from this.
2 GeoffWard2 (#) May 09th, 2014 - 11:18 am Report abuse
'The target of the marches on Thursday were the corporations (Odebrecht) that benefited from the construction of stadiums ... .'
'The protests ... calmed when the Brazilian leader agreed to talk with the landless and homeless representatives about government housing plans.'

Dilma has been quick to buy-off the communist opportunists that are using these world events to press their own agenda.

The full - and remarkably informative - expose of the tactics of the 'Landless Peasants and Homeless Workers Movements' and the hidden support of the Brasilian Government was sent by the US Ambassador to the US President. It was published in full by Wikileaks.
3 ilsen (#) May 09th, 2014 - 11:21 am Report abuse
Watching this slow motion train - wreck is more exciting than the football.

*passes popcorn to Klingon and boots play station*
4 Briton (#) May 09th, 2014 - 12:56 pm Report abuse
35 days and counting..
5 Conqueror (#) May 09th, 2014 - 01:26 pm Report abuse
Let's see, how does it go? See Brazil and die! Any “normal” person thinking of visiting Brazil for the World Cup is certifiable. And anyone thinking of attending the Olympics needs to question their sanity.

But, if you must go, “Goodbye”. Please write your will before you go. We won't be seeing you again!
6 Idlehands (#) May 09th, 2014 - 03:01 pm Report abuse
No laughing!!!!!
7 yankeeboy (#) May 09th, 2014 - 03:36 pm Report abuse
6. I heard about that here! There was a news story about how bad the preparations were going, they also said even if they get their act together and get the venues done the infrastructure won't be done and all the the money/effort will be wasted in projects that have no value after the games.
Sounds about right.
3rd world countries should not even bother applying.
8 reality check (#) May 09th, 2014 - 04:09 pm Report abuse
Well it's done now, perhaps the IOC should consider pulling their thumb from out of their rectal orifice, getting behind the Brazilian effort and if need be, send in some experts to help them instead of standing on the sidelines looking in!
9 Briton (#) May 09th, 2014 - 06:33 pm Report abuse
Perhaps a deserted island somewhere, [not that deserted ]
or spare land, east Falkland's perhaps, to a build a permanent home for the Olympics,, that way you don't have to rely on that big cost every 4 years,

just a silly thought / idea..
10 yankeeboy (#) May 09th, 2014 - 06:55 pm Report abuse
9. Like the Hunger Games?
11 Briton (#) May 09th, 2014 - 07:01 pm Report abuse
it would be nice to see if CFK and her team mate tinman can complete the course
12 reality check (#) May 09th, 2014 - 07:06 pm Report abuse

If it was held on the islands, I know where I would hold the long jump, triple jump, high jump and pole vault events. Of course only RG teams would qualify and they would be required to negotiate the barbed wire and triangular red signs.
13 Briton (#) May 09th, 2014 - 07:12 pm Report abuse
ha ha, well siad
14 ElaineB (#) May 09th, 2014 - 07:33 pm Report abuse
@8 A team has been sent in to try to sort out the mess. I remember seeing the press conference and the IOC official looked exasperated at the lack of progress.

London is a non-starter because the athlete's village has been converted into housing - part of the sustainability programme - and the remaining venues are being put to public use.

I think the IOC will have to throw a lot of money at this and pretty much take over the project. I feel sorry for Brazilians but I am glad the IOC will have to admit they made a huge mistake. They need to look beyond the bribes.

The only possible saving factor may be that once the World Cup Finals are over, all the construction workers can devote their time to the Olympic venues.
15 ChrisR (#) May 09th, 2014 - 07:44 pm Report abuse
The IOC has demonstrated for the entire world they are as stupid and lacking in foresight as FIFA. I never thought that possible.

Perhaps the rioters at the WC will set fire to the partly built athletics structures like they do the buses. You know it makes sense!

If you are a Brazilian, that is.

It seems being an arsonist is a national pastime.
16 reality check (#) May 09th, 2014 - 08:08 pm Report abuse
I hope and I suspect that the Brazilian events will go ahead successfully and all this panic will just be that, panic.

However, the IOC needs to take a damn good look at itself, because I am sorry to say, they are starting to look like a money making business rather than the worlds most premier sporting organisation.

All that money! corrupt? Think we can take has normal.

Sad isn't it?
17 Conqueror (#) May 10th, 2014 - 09:18 am Report abuse
The FIRST things that need to happen is the removal of Slob Blatter and the removal of the FIFA World Cup to somewhere that can already handle it. Why is Blatter on his FOURTH consecutive term as FIFA president? He's not that good. But then he's Swiss. Loads of corruption. Money comes first! As I understand this is the first World Cup to ever be “held” in South America. Now we know why. Because South America, and latam, can't do anything right. The primary consideration should have been whether the “government” could run its own country. That would have ruled out S.Am and latam countries straightaway. A timetable should have been produced and then regular checks made by FIFA. Once the “project” was more than a year behind, it should have been cancelled and moved. At this stage, I think the whole competition should just be cancelled. Teams, individual players and fans/spectators will all be at risk in Brazil. With a two years to go, the IOC should tell Brazil to get up to speed in the next 3 months or see the Olympics moved or cancelled. For the same reasons. 2014-2016 can be described as the “Brazil Disaster”. And learn from it. South America needs 50-100 years before its able to mount competitions such as these.
18 GeoffWard2 (#) May 10th, 2014 - 09:20 am Report abuse
At least Brasil will have no problem with the Opening/Closing ceremonies.

The Samba School winners at the Rio and Sao Paulo Carnivals provide ready-made performances that simply use the track - in, around, and out.
Minimum cost because they perform for the pride of it and, for many in the parades, they pay for the privilege of taking part.

Of course, if Brasil wants to speak of 'development' they will need to construct a dam somewhere, giant industrial-scale agriculture, etc. Their aero-industry can speak for itself via overflights.

I think all will become possible - and on time ... as long as the rural and urban massed Left-wing pressure-groups can be paid-off - like at the World Football Cup Competition.

But I think these groups will have learned from the World Cup and will find other tactics to potentially close down the Olympic event. My guess is that they will shut down the electricity distribution system, probably across the States of Rio and Sao Paulo.

This will result in 'blood on the streets' - which is, of course, the intention in order to get a month's worth (and more) of world media exposure and a re-direction in the nation economy towards even more 'social provision' for the Brasilian poor.
This will kill off any hope of Brasil becoming a developed nation but the majority voting opinion in Brasil is that this is the preferred direction.
19 ChrisR (#) May 10th, 2014 - 12:09 pm Report abuse
After the WC finishes it will be crystal clear to the world that Brazil is not even close to becoming a “World Power”, except for setting buses on fire, etc.
20 ilsen (#) May 10th, 2014 - 12:19 pm Report abuse
Ooh this is exciting!

I'm phoning out for pizza. Pass me a cold one ChrisR!

I do enjoy a good disaster movie.

Where are all my little troll friends? I need something to rest my feet on.....

what a fuckin tragedy!

Corrupt FIFA + Corrupt, over ambitious Brazilian State. This was never going to end well.
21 Klingon (#) May 11th, 2014 - 01:13 pm Report abuse
Well if the Brazilians to protest and disrupt the games I can't blame them.
I would be pissed to my government couldn't provide the basic needs of clean water, security and governance, but can spend billions on other projects.
Ohh, that's right I live in Argentina... All our tax money ends up as corruption and bribes also :(
22 ilsen (#) May 11th, 2014 - 03:57 pm Report abuse
I think FIFA should run the whole show on play station.


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