Tens of thousands of Brazilians took to the streets on Saturday, blaming President Jair Bolzano for handling the health crisis, and more than half a million people have died from the epidemic, AFP reporters said.
Protesters marched for a fourth weekend following calls from left-wing parties and unions, especially those accused of indiscriminately embezzling public funds in the purchase of vaccines. In Rio, thousands of people dressed in red and wearing masks marched under slogans like “Expel the perpetrator of corruption.”
Organizers called for protests across the country “To Defend Democracy, Living the Life of Brazilians and Expelling Bolzano”.
Elsewhere in Rio, protesters condemned the late start of the vaccination campaign in Brazil, demanding massive unemployment, and additional help for the poor population facing the epidemic. “It is very important that anyone who feels hurt or oppressed by this government takes to the streets because we must fight for the return of democracy.”65-year-old social worker Lays de Oliveira AFP
Brazilian newspapers reported on the afternoon protests in 20 of the 26 Brazilian states. Neither the assessors nor the authorities have released the number of protesters at this time.
But large-scale protests were expected in the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo, with a population of 12.3 million, and in the capital, Brasilia.
Jair Bolzano is facing the worst moment of his presidency starting in 2019. His approval rating has dropped to less than 24% and polls suggest he will lose his left-wing predecessor Luis Inacio Lula da Silva in the October presidential election. Supported the protests on Saturday.
Brazil has officially recorded nearly 550,000 deaths from Covid-19, the highest in the United States alone, with a population of 120 million more than the South American company. Jair Bolzano is openly skeptical about the health crisis, the need to wear a mask and other measures to reduce the spread of the virus.
The opposition filed an indictment on June 30 that included 20 different allegations against the president, but Jair Bolzano still has enough support in Congress to thwart these attempts.
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