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SBD Global/May 3, 2013/Facilities

Protestors Call For Rio Olympic Stadium Name Change After Havelange Bribe Charge

Protesters "are pushing for a name change" at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic stadium after FIFA said this week that the man for whom the facility is named "took bribes," according to Tariq Panja of BLOOMBERG. The Estadio Olimpico João Havelange in downtown Rio will serve as the host for track and field events at the Games. Havelange, FIFA president between '74 and '98, was among three former football officials "who took bribes from the organization’s now-bankrupt former marketing partner ISL," FIFA said this week. He resigned his role as FIFA’s honorary president on April 18. Rio-based National Front of Sports Fans member Gabriel Marinho said, "It’s shame for Brazil to have this name attached to the stadium. It will be a great shame if it still has this name when the Olympics start."  An official at Havelange’s Rio office "declined to comment," saying that the 96-year-old "was unwell and was no longer active in an official capacity" (BLOOMBERG, 5/2).
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