January 21, 2016 / 10:55 PM / 3 years ago

Mayor promises Olympics venue delivery after annulling contracts

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Mayor Eduardo Paes has guaranteed the tennis and equestrian venues for this year’s Rio Olympics will be ready even though last week he annulled contracts with the companies building the two arenas.

Rio de Janeiro's Mayor Eduardo Paes attends an interview with Reuters, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil August 4, 2015. REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes

“We can’t be at the mercy of those who don’t honour their commitments,” Paes told Reuters on Thursday. “There is no risk. Everything will be delivered on time for test events and for the Games.”

The tennis centre is more than 90 percent complete but Olympic officials have not disclosed how much of the equestrian venue, where dressage, cross country and show jumping events will take place, is done.

The mayor was indignant at the slow pace of construction work and after annulling the contracts he promised to go to court to ensure the two firms paid their fines.

Ibeg Engenharia e Construcoes, the firm employed to reform the equestrian centre, is being sued for around 10.1 million reais ($2.43 million).

The same company is part of a consortium that was building the tennis centre, along with Tangran and Damini.

Ibeg said the slow pace of work on the equestrian venue was due to late payments made by the mayor’s office and also vowed to seek reparations in court.

Rio de Janeiro will host South America’s first Olympics between Aug. 5-21.

Most of the venues are due to be completed on time, which was not the case for the 2014 World Cup soccer finals that were also held in Brazil.

($1 = 4.1558 Brazilian reais)

Writing by Andrew Downie; Editing by Tony Jimenez

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