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Only 30 days into office, scandals dog US favorite Bolsonaro


Brazil’s new far-right President Jair Bolsonaro, who came to power with a campaign pledge to eradicate corruption in Latin America’s largest economy, has been plagued by financial scandal allegations.

Bolsonaro, a former army officer-turned-politician known for his hostility to minorities and affection for authoritarian rule, swept to power last October with a huge mandate from supporters to fight rampant economic and political corruption.

During his election campaign, the far-right nationalist managed to unite political groups by promising economic reforms but refrained from disclosing exactly how he was going to bring about such changes.

Now, just 30 days into his first term, Bolsonaro’s popularity has been challenged and the united right-wing base that made his presidency possible appears to be slowly disintegrating.

The widespread public anger over a series of huge corruption scandals that blighted the governments of Bolsonaro’s predecessors – Dilma Rousseff and Michel Temer – was a major factor that contributed to his election victory in October.

PressTV-Brazil’s President Temer faces new corruption charge

Shortly after he took office on January 1, Bolsonaro and his family have faced a series of corruption scandal allegations, leaving many of their supporters disturbed and disillusioned.

A recent investigation by Brazil’s Financial Activities Control Council (COAF) has revealed suspicious financial transactions worth hundreds of thousands of dollars made to the bank accounts of Flavio Bolsonaro, the president’s eldest son, and Michelle, Bolsonaro’s wife.

The COAF report also said another series of suspicious cash transfers worth nearly $30,000 had been made to Flavio’s bank account between June and July 2017.

Bolsonaro’s son has denied any wrongdoing, claiming he was the victim of a left-wing witch hunt designed to tarnish his father’s reputation.

During an interview with Brazil’s RecordTV in Switzerland, Bolsonaro said he “believes” in his son and that the accusations were “unfounded.”

Bolsonaro’s first month in office was also blighted by the collapse of a mining dam near the southeast city of Brumadinho.

PressTV-Shocking moment of deadly dam collapse in Brazil: Video

The disaster saw large parts of the city drowned under a torrent of waste, leaving at least 115 people dead and nearly 250 others still missing, according to local officials.

Bolsonaro is an ardent admirer of US President Donald Trump and the White House’s policies, particularly those with regard to opposing left-wing governments in Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela.

The Brazilian president, who is also known as “Tropical Trump,” has sparked controversy by following Trump on relocating his country’s embassy in Israel to the occupied Jerusalem al-Quds.

If the Brazilian president follows through the plan, the Latin American country would become the third nation after the US and Guatemala to have an embassy in the highly sensitive city, which is the third holiest Muslim site.

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