Carlos Augusto Pereira
"It had no value. We were the ones who gave it value"
Now living in
Carlos Augusto Pereira, 53
More than 15, 20 years here. Even the dogs misses the house. Because he was used to it there. I was the one who built this. They managed to make it so that any tourist who gets here, the first thing they would have seen is that house. It was this house which was bothering them so much. You know what annoys me? They didn’t think this was worth anything, it didn’t have any value at all. It was worth something to us.
Those that have already left were part of the 700 families, each one put on average, in a house like this, 50-100 trucks of earth. We would help each other throughout the night, one helping the other carry the earth. Today, this make-up to make everything look perfect, they had to take out that hole over there. Tomorrow, you’re going to walk past here, and it will be covered with soil, they’ll make everything look right again. I’m angry, because they are cowards. I went several times but they didn’t want to meet me. Why didn’t they want to meet me? Because they knew they were in the wrong.
They have been putting the pressure on up till now. I have relaxed now. Why? I couldn’t take anymore. I haven’t been to my shop to work for five days. My legs are aching from carrying so much furniture. It’s just too draining. They said they would give me a house, exchange my behaved like crooks with me.
Everything they did to me was nonsense, because they get money in their pockets and use third rate materials. Carlos Carvalho has got money to compensate us decently. He went on TV to say he doesn’t like the poor, and he doesn’t want them near him. The majority of people who are not here today left because they couldn’t take the pressure. They couldn’t take the pressure that was put on them. You knew what was going to happen when you went to bed at midnight, that you were going to get woken up with municipal guards at your door. “They’re going to knock it down today, they are going to knock it down tomorrow.” That’s what happened. Some who left here were dead within two months. They were happy here. But we are going to carry on being happy. I would be ashamed to take out 700 families We are 20 families who embraced each other and struggled until the end. We are fewer, but we are the warriors who took it. We should celebrate: they will never take this victory away from us. In two years time,they will start bothering us again. I don’t believe in Rio de Janeiro, I really don’t. This story is over, let’s look at the reality.
Carlos’s home was the last one to be knocked down in Vila Autodromo. He was there for the demolition
Reporter: Lara Norgaard
Photographer: Lara Norgaard