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segunda-feira, 17 de outubro de 2011

Brazil Sports minister: next victim of the corruption-exposure campaign?

Brazil’s largest circulation magazine Veja, claimed in its last edition that the Sports Minister Orlando Silva has been involved in corruption actions totalling millions of dollars originally destined to promote sports among children from poor households.

Orlando Silva and his predecessor both belong to the Communist party

Allegedly the program ‘Second Half’ in the last eight years could have been involved in the deviation of almost the equivalent of 23 million dollars and could include in the scam Orlando Silva’s predecessor in the job, Agnelo Queiroz, currently governor of Brasilia Federal District.
The magazine famous for exposing corruption cases that have knocked out several ministers from the cabinet of President Dilma Rousseff says the source of information is a policeman, Joao Dias Ferrerira, together with Minister Silva, both members of the Communist Party of Brazil, who has been in jail since last year for having pocketed money from a non government organization which received monthly instalments from the Sports Ministry.
According to Ferreira the NGO received funds from the Second Half program but previously they had to agree on a percentage-skim sometimes up to 20% with the Ministry of Sports. The Communist Party would indicate members who would supply the false bills to make the operation ‘legal’.
The messenger and ‘percentage’ collector Celio Soares Pereira would receive the ‘skim’ from the NGO regularly (almost monthly) and would deliver the money to aides close to the minister. On one occasion according to Pereira, he handed the money directly to Orlando Silva in the parking lot of the Sports ministry.
“I collected the money from Federal District NGO representatives that received funds from the ‘Second Half’ program and I delivered it in a card box to the minister. They were all 50 and 100 Real bills (equivalent to 28 and 57 dollars)”, said the messenger to Veja.
However Minister Silva sent a letter to Veja, which was published in the magazine, denying all allegations which he describes as “false, senseless, fabricated and irrational”, and at the same time announces he would begin legal actions against the ‘slanders’.
Since President Roursseff took office last January first, her cabinet has lost five ministers, four of them because of corruption claims published in the press. So far a cabinet chief, Transport, Tourism and Agriculture have had to step down, while the head of Defence went down following public derogatory remarks towards some of his colleagues.


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