Rio chiefs defend Oly works

Rio chiefs defend Oly works

The organisers of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games has countered criticism of slow preparations with an assurance that they would deliver the event on time and within budget.

The International Olym­pic Committee (IOC) has expressed concerns for months at sluggish preparations for South America’s first-ever Olympiad and on Tuesday, vice-president John Coates said there was “critical concern”.

But the Local Organising Committee (LOC) insisted in a statement they would deliver their “historic mission” with IOC support, adding they were fully focused on their task.

“We have a historic mission: to organise the first Olympic and Paralympic Games in Brazil and in South America. We are going to achieve this.”

Coates earlier told an Olympic Forum in Sydney the IOC had been forced to take “unprecedented” action, embedding experts in the Organising Committee to ensure the Games go ahead.