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Montevideo, September 24th 2018 - 12:26 UTC

Brazil's Lula gives his party the green light to find a new presidential candidate

Wednesday, April 25th 2018 - 08:15 UTC
Full article 28 comments
“I want you to feel totally free to take whatever decision you need because 2018 is an important year for the PT, for the left and for democracy,” wrote Lula da Silva “I want you to feel totally free to take whatever decision you need because 2018 is an important year for the PT, for the left and for democracy,” wrote Lula da Silva
But PT president Gleisi Hoffmann writing on Facebook that they would keep him as their candidate. “The people want Lula freed, that Lula be president!” But PT president Gleisi Hoffmann writing on Facebook that they would keep him as their candidate. “The people want Lula freed, that Lula be president!”

Brazil's ex-president Lula, who is imprisoned for corruption, on Tuesday gave his Workers' Party (PT) the green light to find a new candidate for the October presidential election in which he remains the frontrunner. “I want you to feel totally free to take whatever decision you need because 2018 is an important year for the PT, for the left and for democracy,” wrote Lula da Silva in a letter to the party leadership.

But the PT dismissed his offer, with party president Gleisi Hoffmann writing on Facebook that they would keep him as their candidate. “The people want Lula freed, that Lula be president! There is no plan B because Lula is innocent,” she wrote, saying his candidacy would be formally approved at a national convention later this year.

The party has said it will exhaust all legal avenues in the hope that he can run in an election that he is the favorite to win. Ahead of the vote, the PT has stepped up displays of unconditional support for its co-founder who was jailed for 12 years on April 7, moving its headquarters to the southern city of Curitiba where he is serving his sentence.

But experts say it is highly unlikely he will be allowed to run and the party has no other leaders with his charisma or experience to replace him. One possible substitute is ex-Sao Paulo mayor Fernando Haddad, while another is former minister Jaques Wagner -- but the former is unlikely to win unanimous support and the latter is plagued by suspicions of corruption.

In his letter, Lula said he was “happy” about the latest Datafolha research, which showed that despite his incarceration, he would still receive 31% of the vote -- although that was six percentage points lower than the previous poll.

The former head of state was convicted for accepting a seaside apartment as a bribe from a huge construction company linked to the state-controlled oil major Petrobras. He claims he has been framed to prevent him from running in October's election.

The deadline for registering as a candidate is August 15. Under Brazil's clean slate law, his conviction means he would be barred from running, but the Superior Electoral Tribunal will make a definitive ruling by September 17.

Categories: Politics, Brazil.

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  • Jack Bauer

    “but Lula does not want to become an obstacle to the candidacy of another PT candidate”...

    Well, well, well, how dramatic of you, and how magnanimous of Lula....one more for Lula's collection of arrogant self-praise :- “Never has there been a more magnanimous man in the world, than me”....”...if he weren't ridiculous, he'd be funny.

    Lula represents the political crooks of Brazil...

    Apr 26th, 2018 - 07:58 pm +1
  • :o))

    @JB:

    REF: “if he weren't ridiculous, he'd be funny”:

    His being ridiculous; he really is funny! :o))
    But it looks like he has a very strong competitor [in being not only ridiculous but also in racketeering]:
    EXAME:
    REF: “se eleito, será tarefa difícil tirá-lo do cargo”:
    https://exame.abril.com.br/brasil/ciro-gomes-diz-que-se-eleito-sera-tarefa-dificil-tira-lo-do-cargo/

    Apr 27th, 2018 - 09:06 am +1
  • Jack Bauer

    @:o))
    Ciro Gomes' arrogant speech, “if elected, no one will take me down, I'm not Dilma” sizes up this leftist pretty well. His declaration that Brazil's problems are structural , is stale news.

    IF the PT had actually used the hundreds of billions of dollars spent (disappeared) with the 2 PACs, in an honest fashion, Brazil would be in a relatively good situation.

    His idea that the problems will be solved by the restauration of democracy (? is he saying it's not a democracy, now ?) and political leadership (true, but provided in the right direction) is far easier said than done....no government that has to deal with 32 parties, having to bribe them for the necessary support, will manage to do very much....and if it does, it'll be at a very high cost to the population....in other words, good ole corruption will flourish like always, and investments will be kept at the bare minimum to fool the poor into thinking that they are being 'looked after'.

    Apr 27th, 2018 - 05:28 pm +1
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