Brazil: the silence of Bolsonaro, the protests of his supporters

The electoral commission has decreed her defeat, her political allies have recognized her, but the emptiness around has not yet convinced current Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro to step aside.

Bolsonaro keeps silent afterwards the victory of his opponent, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silvawho returns to Palácio do Planalto 12 years after his last term.

But the situation is tense, some of the supporters of the outgoing president deny the defeat and block the roads.

Antoniel Almeida is one of the protesters. He does not accept the change at the top: “We will not accept to lose what we have achieved so far, we want what our flag says: Order and Progress. We will not accept the way the elections went”.

Even Ezequias, a truck driver, does not recognize Lula’s victory: “President Jair Bolsonaro has been forcibly removed from his post and we will put him back in power with the strength we have, we truck drivers.”

Meanwhile, the winner, Lula, said he wanted to rule in the name of all Brazilians and received congratulations from world leaders, including the US president Joe Biden who stressed that the victory of the leader of the left came after free and fair elections.

In Biden’s tweet: “I congratulate Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva on his election as the next president of Brazil following free, fair and transparent elections. I look forward to working together to continue cooperation between our two countries in the months and in the years to come”.

In the hours after the vote, Lula also received the support in person of the Argentine president.

President-elect Lula will be sworn in on January 1st: a two-month transition period is foreseen which could be made difficult if Bolsonaro decides not to cooperate.

How the elections went

The comeback was not enough to overturn the polls.

Jair Bolsonarothe outgoing president in Brazil, leading the Liberal party, lost against Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, re-elected for the third time. But the right-wing leader remained silent: he did not admit a narrow defeat, with less than 2% of the vote difference. An electoral result that leaves the door open to uncertainty.

Unlike the defeated candidate in the runoff, leaders around the world were quick to congratulate Lula on her victory. The Argentine president Alberto Fernández reached San Paolo. It is a historic moment for the Latin American left but the result of the polls also reflects the profound polarization of the country, which has passed from Bolsonaro’s far right to Lula’s workers’ party. In fact, Pedro Xavier, 25, manager of a jazz club, explains his choice in the ballot box as follows: “We have experienced four years of great inhumanity, inequality and exclusion. I believe that the new government will bring about a change: for this reason, I voted for Lula, today I’m very happy that he made it, “he smiles. But the country remains deeply divided. The exultation contrasts with the disappointment and anger of political opponents. Hundreds of pro-Bolsonaro truck drivers blocked a highway near Rio de Janeiro to protest the electoral result that has been clear since last night.

“I am risen”, the comment of Lula who has already ruled Brazil and its 214 million inhabitants between 2003 and 2010. Then he spent 580 days in prison for a corruption sentence later canceled. The return to power is set for next January 1st.

Brazil: the silence of Bolsonaro, the protests of his supporters