Rio 2014 football World Cup: Free entry for indigenous people
Rio de Janeiro: Football world governing body FIFA has reportedly accepted a Brazilian government proposal to offer free entry at the 2014 World Cup to the country`s indigenous population and low income earners.
FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke confirmed the request would be met during a conversation with Brazil`s sports minister Aldo Rebelo this week.
The measure will not form part of the allocation of half-priced tickets to be made available for students and the elderly.
According to reports, the initiative will apply for matches in Manaus and Cuiaba, whose indigenous populations are higher than in other World Cup host cities.
Low income earners who qualify for the government`s Bolsa Familia program - which provides monthly payments to families living below the poverty line - will receive free entry at all 12 venues.
"We want the World Cup to be an event for the entire population of Brazil," Rebelo was quoted as saying by Estadao.
"Even half-priced tickets are too expensive for the indigenous population and those who are part of Bolsa Familia."
Details of the initiative, including how many free tickets will be allocated and how they will be distributed, are still being finalized by FIFA.
The policy is understood to be a sensitive topic for FIFA, which has stated that even sponsors do not receive free World Cup tickets.