Another Brazilian minister, and particularly close to President Dilma Rousseff has been targeted by the Sunday edition of a Sao Paulo magazine with national circulation. According to the report Communications minister Paulo Bernardo has been using the private jet of a major public contractor of the Brazilian government.
“As published in the press, claims are very serious” regarding Minister Bernardo, said Monday afternoon in Congress Brazil’s Attorney General Roberto Gurgel.
However the country’s top prosecutor also cautioned it was essential to analyze carefully facts and claims. “The public ministry can’t precipitate and jump into conclusions based only on claims published in the press”.
The Epoca magazine published Sunday that the Communications Minister, who also happens to be the husband of recently named cabinet chief, Gleisi Hoffmann, only last week travelled in the private jet belonging to the construction corporation of Sanches Tripoloni who has several contracts with the federal government.
Minister Bernardo belongs to the Workers Party as does his wife and cabinet chief.
Chief prosecutor Gurgel met Monday afternoon with Vice-president Michel Temer and on leaving the office said his presence was simply a “courtesy visit”.
When asked more claims involving other ministers Gurgel said that not all of them had reached his office.
“There are claims that have been published in the press, but yet have to reach the Prosecutor’s office”, said Gurgel, who recalled that his re-confirmation in his post took some time, so he will be needing some time to look at all new cases.
So far the eight month administration of President Rousseff has lost four ministers, (cabinet chief, Defence, Transport and Agriculture plus an ongoing investigation in Tourism) that have seriously slowed her legislative agenda because they involve allies of the twelve-party ruling coalition.
This is particularly true with the PMDB, which is President Rousseff’ Workers party main ally and has control over the Senate and blocking power in the Lower House. Besides, PMDB holds the Vice-presidency with Michel Temer.