Brazil, Day D+2: Bolsonaro in silence as part of his team moves towards the transition

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The Brazilian president and candidate Jair Bolsonaro has not yet commented on the results of the presidential elections last Sunday, October 30, which gave Luiz Inacio ‘Lula’ da Silva as the winner. While part of his team advances in the transition, some representatives of the truckers’ union block the streets demanding that the far-right candidate challenge the election results.

As reported on November 1 by the Brazilian Minister of Communications, Fabio Faria, President Jair Bolsonaro will not challenge his defeat at the polls and will give a speech to the nation this Tuesday afternoon.

Brazilian public opinion hopes that when Bolsonaro addresses the country, the tense atmosphere that is felt in different cities and highways in the country will calm down, after pro-Bolsonaro truckers have gone out to protest since Sunday, when the results of the the second round.

Since then, 21 of the 26 states in the country and the Federal District have been affected by the strong protests, with the southern state of Santa Catarina being the most affected, where Bolsonaro obtained almost 70% support.

Aerial view showing supporters of President Jair Bolsonaro, mainly truckers, blocking the Castelo Branco highway, on the outskirts of Sao Paulo, Brazil, on November 1, 2022. Supporters of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro blocked major highways for seconds day as tensions mounted his silence after narrowly losing re-election to his bitter rival Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. The Federal Highway Police (PRF) reported on Tuesday more than 250 total or partial roadblocks in at least 23 states by Bolsonaro supporters, while local media said the protests outside the country’s main international airport in Sao Paulo delayed passengers and caused the cancellation of several flights. AFP – CAIO GUATELLI

It is known that Bolsonaro has not called ‘Lula’ after the voting on October 30, but the political allies of the still president, including his chief of staff, Ciro Nogueira, have already had approaches with the ‘Lula’ team to start the government transition.

Starting this Tuesday, the newly elected vice president, Geraldo Alckim, will be in charge of coordinating the transition of the future government of ‘Lula’ da Silva, together with the representative of the Workers’ Party, Gleisi Hoffmann.

Brazilian law determines that the transition between the incoming and the outgoing government must begin 48 hours after the elections, a period that will be respected as announced by the ‘Lula’ team.

According to Edinho Silva, one of the campaign managers of the incoming government, the first contacts between the two parties have been “cordial”, “republican” and “democratic”.

Other politicians, such as the president of the Lower House, have said that Bolsonaro’s team should accept the result of the second round elections, which gave ‘Lula’ a 50.9% victory over a 49.1% vote. Bolsonaro.

A victory amidst polarization

Truck drivers were a key public for Bolsonaro during the elections, since they have benefited from the reduction in diesel prices in the current Administration. This is a strong union that has previously managed to disrupt the country’s economy by closing roads.

Some supermarkets have reported shortage problems due to blockades to transport food from agricultural states to major cities, mainly affecting São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.

The Guarulhos airport, one of the two that serves the city of Sao Paulo, reported that twenty flights were canceled due to the demonstrations that took place on the access roads to the air terminal.

Truck drivers and other demonstrators block a section of the BR-116 highway between Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, in Barra Mansa, in protest at the electoral results, in which President Jair Bolsonaro lost to leftist Lula da Silva.
Truck drivers and other demonstrators block a section of the BR-116 highway between Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, in Barra Mansa, in protest at the electoral results, in which President Jair Bolsonaro lost to leftist Lula da Silva. Mauro PIMENTEL AFP

Rodrigo García, governor of the state, said that the situation was already under control and that the access roads were cleared by the protesters on Tuesday morning.

“Honest Brazilians are against the return of that gang that looted the state coffers (…) We are not going to move until that bandit is prevented from assuming the presidency,” said truck driver Vando Soares, against the return of ‘Lula’, who was already in power between 2003 and 2010.

The Brazilian Justice is committed to preserving order

Brazil’s Supreme Court ordered security forces to disperse coup-driven protests organized by some truckers, also threatening them with drastic legal sanctions.

The Minister of Justice, Anderson Torres, said that the Federal Highway Police has acted “uninterruptedly” and that it has already cleared the blockades in at least 192 points where the protesters were.

For their part, the National Transport Confederation and the formal truckers’ unions have also disavowed the protests, assuring that the movement is led by “small groups” of individuals.

In the campaign, ‘Lula’ promised to annul many of the policies implemented by Bolsonaro, such as measures in favor of weapons, which generated the anger of many Brazilians. He also spoke about strengthening the protection of the Amazon rainforest.

In recent months, Bolsonaro has questioned the validity of the electronic voting system that has been operating in Brazil for almost 25 years, sparking fears that he would not accept the results if he were not victorious.

However, in his electoral contest he affirmed that the one who obtained the most votes would win and that “that is democracy.”

With EFE and Reuters

Brazil, Day D+2: Bolsonaro in silence as part of his team moves towards the transition