Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff has been in the crosshairs lately, staving off impeachment in the face of corruption charges. Deft political maneuvering has protected Dilma so far, but popular opposition has been growing steadily, exacerbated by a worsening economic crisis. Over the weekend, a million people protested across the country, calling for Dilma’s ouster. The AFP:
Chanting “Dilma out!” and draped in the bright yellow and green national flag, protesters across Brazil sought to pressure Congress into accelerating impeachment proceedings against the leftist leader, blamed for a massive corruption scandal and the worst economic recession in a quarter century.
“We are at a decisive moment for our country. We are going to start the change now,” said Rogerio Chequer, leader of Vem Pra Rua, one of the main organizers of the demonstrations, at the Sao Paulo protest.
Helio Bicudo, a prominent lawyer who once supported the government but helped initiate the push for impeachment told the Sao Paulo protesters: “Brazil can’t take being looted and robbed anymore, it can’t take more incompetence and corruption.”
A big turnout was likely to spur deputies in Congress who had been wavering over whether or not to drop support for the increasingly isolated president.
Last week, former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was detained on corruption charges. The scandal doesn’t seem to be dying down any time soon.
It wasn’t so long ago that analysts were applauding Brazil’s economic growth, predicting that the country would anchor a surge in prosperity across South America. How the mighty have fallen.