Lula named Chief of Staff
Luíz Inácio Lula da Silva, who served as President of Brazil from 2003 to 2011, has been named as incumbent President Dilma Rousseff’s new Chief of Staff.
Brazil has been embroiled in a massive corruption scandal involving state owned oil giant Petrobras. The ruling Workers’ Party (PT) has been implicated with hundreds of public and party officials being indicted. More recently the investigators have charged Lula with money laundering and fraud as part of the investigation.
The widespread belief is that his appointment is designed to shield him from prosecution. The appointment led to protests in a number of cities and follows on from massive demonstrations last weekend when an estimated three million people demonstrated across the country against government corruption.
This attempt to bring back the former president who was extremely popular is against a backdrop of a worsening economy, rising unemployment, impeachment proceedings against President Rousseff and an investigation into her election expenses at the 2014 presidential election.
The newspaper Folha De S.Paulo reports that Lula accepted the role on condition that he brings some of his allies into government. This will mean a Cabinet reshuffle in the days ahead.