Mayor Marcelo Crivella, of Rio de Janeiro, has declared a ban on gambling at local lottery agencies. The move was put in place yesterday, with the intention of avoiding large crowds and queues.
The mayor emphasised that bets can be made online and that the main objective is to deter people from gathering at lottery agencies in the midst of an spike in COVID-19 in Rio cases.
Crivella said that lottery companies will continue to work normally, “giving benefits, receiving bills but without bets,” according to BNL Data. He added: “Our effort is based on taking balanced steps, preserving lives and essential trade activities. So we’re asking to stop betting this week.”
“A lot of people haven’t realized that they need to avoid crowds and stay home. They can go outside only to do essential jobs or meet urgent needs. By unnecessarily exposing yourself, you’re increasing the risk. Our intention is to prevent that.”
The Mayor assured last week that he will bring the Brazilian Jockey Club to justice in order to force them to stop operations. Late in the month, Rio de Janeiro’s Municipal Finance Secretariat issued a notice to the facility not to restart its operations.
The racecourse, located in Lagoa, resumed its schedule in late April and, despite a state ban, offered nine races in early May. Operators were willing to allow races to take place all week without the public attending, while bets would only be made through mobile devices or online.
It was decided by the Secretary of Licenses, Inspection and Urban Control that the operation is not considered necessary, so it can not function until the lockdown is over.