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Brazil sobers to Rousseff impeachment trial
August 23, 2016, 11:13 pm

Impeaching Rousseff, analysts warn, could plunge Brazil into further political crises and divide the country already beleaguered by economic contraction [Xinhua]

Impeaching Rousseff, analysts warn, could plunge Brazil into further political crises and divide the country already beleaguered by economic contraction [Xinhua]


With the largely successful Rio summer Olympics at an end, Brazilians are forced to return to the sobering political reality of their country.

President Dilma Rousseff will be put on trial by the end of the week on charges of mismanaging the federal budget and breaking a number of fiscal policy rules during her reelection campaign.

Days after the games began, the Brazilian Senate voted to impeach Rousseff and she is due to stand a four-day trial on August 25-26 and August 29-30.

She is facing charges of doctoring accounts to hide the size of the public budget deficit and has been suspended since early May while investigations continued.

Stand-in interim President Michel Temer was not popularly received at the games, being the target of loud boos during the opening ceremony.

Consequently, he kept a low profile for the duration of the events and skipped the closing ceremony altogether.

And while Temer has done much to bolster the Brazilian economy and to boost investor confidence in the lead-up to the international sporting event, his role in his predecessor’s impeachment process has painted him in an unfavorable light for crowds of Rousseff supporters who took to the streets to protest her suspension.

Rousseff has pleaded her innocence and pledged to hold a referendum on holding early elections, should she return to office.

However, it appears there is growing momentum to impeach her in the senate.

If she is finally impeached later this month, Temer will serve as president for the remainder of her mandate.

But some national polls say that Brazilians are fed up with corrupt politicians leading the country and would rather see an election held after impeachment.

Temer himself is considered corrupt and is just slightly less unpopular than Rousseff.

Meanwhile, many Brazilians wait to feel the economic impact of the conclusion of the games. It is estimated that Brazil spent approximately $11 billion on the various infrastructural projects that catered to the games, and recent figures by the organizers appear to show that the country just about broke even.

When Brazil won the Olympic bid to host the games back in 2009, it was riding on the highs of a booming economy. In the years to come, progress made by former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva was to be reversed, and by 2014 Brazil began to sink into its worst economic downturn in 25 years.

Any Brazilian government – whether led by Temer or Rousseff – must overcome the challenges of runaway inflation and economic contraction.

Da Silva himself is also currently on trial for alleged obstruction of justice.

The BRICS Post with inputs from Agencies

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