Olympic Games 2024: Torch relay mobilizes around sixty departments, but its cost causes tension

The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Torch Relay before the opening ceremony on July 23, 2021 in Tokyo.

Signed for Pas de Calais. The department will be one of the official stages of the Olympic torch relay from April to July 2024. Jean-Claude Leroy (Socialist Party, PS), President of the Department Council and Thierry Rey, Special Adviser of the Organizing Committee. The Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games (Cojop), initialed on Wednesday, November 23, an agreement that describes this future passage.

Two days earlier, Vendea did the same. Like other departments in recent weeks. In total, 60 of them (out of 101) responded to the call for candidates launched by Cojop to join this relay that will travel through France. The exact list of sections for this stage will not be known until early 2023, and it will be necessary to wait until mid-2023 to know the exact details of the route – the aim is to pass through around 700 cities.

In the official narrative of the Games, this torch relay is symbolic “Sharing the Olympic Spirit”. Here’s what to expect in Pas-de-Calais: “We are a country of ordinary people who love popular sports. The Olympics are special, a procession that cannot be missed, a sentence that has meaning. ” explains Ludovic Locket, vice president in charge of sports and major sporting events.

The speech is identical in the northern neighbor. “We need to use these kinds of events to get people to show their love for the Olympic values.” This is a chance! », Advancing Francois-Xavier Cadart (far right), Vice-President of the Department Council Delegated Sports.

“That’s a huge amount for a one-day event”

Installing a relay did not lead to such support everywhere. Several departments appeared to opt out of the merger: Kreuz was the first to announce it, followed by a dozen other communities in February. Grounds for this refusal: €180,000 (including all taxes) was to be paid to Cojop. “just impossible”notes Marie-Christine Bunlon (Les Républicains, LR), Vice-President of the Creuse Council in charge of sports.

“The flames of the Pont du Gard, the picture would be wonderful. But for a one-day event, this is a huge amount. ” Supported by Vincent Bouget, Councilor of the Department of the Guard (led by the Union of the Left), sports delegate. “And this does not take into account the organization of events, which means that you can easily reach 250,000 euros,” Adds Jean-Claude Leblois (PS), President of the Ott-Ven Council, for whom “goods” A passage of fire appears against Olympic values”.

Source: Le Monde

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