Signatories call on the judiciary not to uphold conviction against Lula da Silva (24/1/18)
Former president Lula da Silva is well ahead in the polls for the Brazilian presidential elections in October this year. Last July Lula was sentenced to over nine years and, on 24 January, the case against him goes to appeal. His conviction is likely to be upheld. If so, he will be unable to run in the elections. The speed with which his appeal came to court suggests that the Brazilian judiciary may have their eyes on candidate registration deadlines rather than law.
Investigations in the original trial were unable to find evidence of any connections between fraudulent contracts signed by the state oil company, Petrobras, and Lula’s action. Yet he was convicted.
There were several flaws in Lula’s trial such as lack of impartiality, being convicted on charges different from those presented by prosecutors and, more importantly, no evidence. His rights are being violated, which is why Geoffrey Robertson QC is taking his case to the UN. That is also why we believe he is a victim of lawfare.
The Brazilian judicial system is being used for political purposes. The Brazilian people should be the ones to decide whether Lula should be president of Brazil, not unelected members of the judiciary.
No coup in Brazil
Chris Williamson MP
Labour Friends of Progressive Latin America
Alfredo Saad Filho Professor of political economy, Soas University of London
Francisco Dominguez Middlesex University
Members of the Brazilian Workers’ party (UK)
Renata F Peters
Democracy for Brazil
Director and founder, D-Movies
Dalia Andrade Oliveria
Dilma 13 UK Committee
Marcia Martins da Rosa
Arts for Democracy
This article was originally published in Guardian Letters at: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jan/23/let-lula-stand-again-to-be-president-of-brazil