Coronavirus in Brazil: the Carnival of Rio threatened

Coronavirus au Brésil: le Carnaval de Rio menacé

Several samba schools of the carnival of Rio de Janeiro have decided that they would not participate in the festivities in February 2021, unless a vaccine against the coronavirus, is not available by then, announced Tuesday a daily brazilian.

Mestre, Imperatriz Leopoldinense, Vila Isabel, Beija-Flor and São Clemente, five of the top 12 schools, announced at the daily O Globo that they were going to vote for a postponement sine die of the parades at a meeting Tuesday.

“It is simple, if the vaccine does not arrive (on time), there will be no samba. How can we gather crowds without herd immunity? “said the president of Sao Clemente, Renatinho Gomes.

The mayor of Salvador de Bahia (north-east), where these festivities also attract thousands of tourists, has proposed a postponement of the carnival throughout the country in April or June, but the leaders of the samba schools remain skeptical.

“Without the vaccine, it is impossible to organize the carnival, regardless of the date, in February or in June,” said Fernando Fernandes, the president of Vila Isabel, which is a judicial decision to cancel the festivities at the last minute.

“There is a risk of heavy investment and see the latest the curve of the contamination back, which could bring the justice to suspend” the parades, he added.

In the Rio Carnival, one of the largest folk festivals in the world, the sumptuous parades of samba schools and their floats monumental in the Sambodrome attract thousands of tourists from around the world.

Each school’s parade with nearly 3,000 members in costume, dancing very close to each other and singing along the procession, which lasts a little over an hour.

“How are we going to do? With a distance of two meters between the dancers? All the world sings with a mask? “asked Fernando Fernandes.

“What would be the weight on the conscience of a leader who would see fifty members of his school to die after the parade? “adds Elias Rich, president of Mestre.

In the State of Rio, the latest report of the ministry of Health reported more than 132,000 people infected and 11 474 dead, but the curve of deaths reported each day is declining since several weeks, 59 have been identified in the past 24 hours.

The déconfinement began gradually, with the reopening of shops and restaurants, even if the schools remain closed.

Two of the vaccines under development, the most advanced in the world must be tested on thousands of volunteers in Brazil and the most optimistic forecasts expect approval by the end of the year and vaccinations in early 2021.

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