Brazil's Justice Minister Resigns Amidst Corruption Scandal
Justice Minister Jose Eduardo Cardozo has decided to resign from his post following the controversial corruption scandal he is handling.
On Monday, Brazil's presidential palace informed the public that Cardozo is leaving his position as justice minister. His resignation comes shortly after his political allies disapproved of his ways in handling corruption issues, The News & Observer reported.
Cardozo was assigned to the said position in 2011. Following his resignation, Wellington César Lima e Silva, a Bahia prosecutor, will take over the position.
Cardozo Was Pressured
Per Reuters, the former justice minister was pressured by several factors. The investigation of bribery and corruption has already led some of the officials behind bars and recent speculation suggests that former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is also under investigation.
Silva, who lead the country from 2003 to 2010, was notified that the court is planning to examine his bank, telephone and finances. This move reportedly increased the pressure on Cardozo, which triggered him to leave his post.
Per the report, Worker's Party officials were not happy about Cardozo's refusal to limit the investigation of "Operation car Wash." The said corruption investigation involved several senior politicians and business executives. Moreover, they are also mad about the investigation towards Silva, who allegedly enjoys several benefits from the construction of companies that are implicated in the kickback scandal.
Silva is Innocent
On Saturday, Worker's Party celebrated its 36 years and during the said event, Silva expressed his dismay against the media and the opposition. He explained that all allegations against him are lies.
He also lashed out about the subpoenas he received, stressing his innocence. "If this is the price people must pay to prove their innocence, I'll do it," Silva said. "The only thing I want is that afterward they give me a good conduct certificate because I doubt there is anyone more honest than I am in the country."
The Guardian reported that Silva is willing to run for president in 2018 if necessary.
Cardozo's Resignation on the Corruption Case
ABC News reported that Cardozo's departure will not affect the investigation. However, Claudio Couto, a political science professor at Fundacao Getulio Vargas, believed that it will affect President Dilma Rousseff because the two were close allies.
Currently, Rousseff is battling her own impeachment trial for allegedly manipulating government accounts two years ago to have more of a budget during the run-up until the election. The opposition party is also investigating if her campaign in 2014 was funded with illegal money. If proven, her re-election might be at stake.
"It's a tragic situation," Couto said. "She has to try to please the party because she needs its support, but every time she does so she undermines what little credibility she has left."
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