Brazil's Senatorial Committee (CPI) investigating President Jair Bolsonaro's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic Tuesday recommended the head of state be prosecuted for crimes against humanity and that he is denied access to social media for having spread false information about the disease.
The CPI Tuesday approved a report recommending Bolsonaro's indictment for serious crimes against humanity for how he managed the COVID-19 pandemic and asked to suspend the president's access to social media for having posted false information about an ailment that has caused 605,000 deaths nationwide.
The text submitted by CPI's rapporteur Renan Calheiros last week was endorsed by 7 out of 11 Senators. In addition to Bolsonaro, the document says 77 other people should be prosecuted, including several current and former cabinet members as well as three of the president's children.
After Tuesday's approval following a six-month inquiry, the report is to be handed over to the Supreme Federal Court (STF), to the Brazilian Prosecutor's Office and the International Criminal Court in The Hague.
The CPI also asked the STF and the Attorney General's Office to suspend Bolsonaro's access to his YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram until further notice, for having spread false information last week in a live stream during which the head of state-linked anticovid vaccination with AIDS. The video was later removed from Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. The video platform also decided to suspend Bolsonaro's channel for a week.
The text, presented by the vice president of the Parliamentary Investigation Commission (CPI), Senator Randolfe Rodrigues, calls for the precautionary suspension of Bolsonaro's access to his accounts to avoid the destruction of evidence.
Bolsonaro, a sceptic of distancing measures and anticovid antigens, mentioned last Thursday the existence of false information that says that there are official reports from the UK government that suggest that those fully vaccinated are developing AIDS much faster than anticipated, something which the British government has denied to be true.
The text also asks that the president recants” denying the correlation between vaccination against the coronavirus and the development of AIDS, under penalty of a fine of R $ 50,000 (about US $ 9,000) for each day of non-compliance.
We can no longer tolerate this type of behaviour, Rodrigues wrote as he accused Bolsonaro of continuing with his policy of disinformation and generating an alleged social chaos.
Bolsonaro has often been accused of spreading false news. In August, the STF decided to investigate him for the crimes of slander and incitement to crime, for his unsubstantiated questioning of the electronic voting system used in Brazil.