Brazil’s Bolsonaro silent on Lula’s election victory until Tuesday

BRASILIA, Oct 31 (Reuters) – President Bolsonaro will not speak publicly about his defeat in Brazil’s presidential election until Tuesday amid suspicions that the far-right nationalist Whether or not he will accept the victory of his left-wing rival Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. .

Communications Minister Fabio Faria told Reuters Bolsonaro had delayed comments so he could return to his residence on Monday night and prepare for his speech.

League leader Claudio Cajado had earlier said Bolsonaro would address the nation on Monday, nearly 24 hours before Brazil’s presidential election was decided.

It was unclear whether Bolsonaro would admit defeat, as Cajado said some advisers encouraged him to do so.

Lula’s victory represents a stunning comeback for the 77-year-old former metalworker, who ruled Brazil from 2003 to 2010 but was jailed on corruption convictions that were later dropped.

Bolsonaro spent Monday at the presidential palace and did not appear in public. Before the vote, he repeatedly and unfoundedly claimed that the electoral system was fraudulent.

His eldest son, Senator Flavio Bolsonaro, thanked his father’s supporters on Twitter, saying: “Let’s look up and don’t give up our Brazil! God is in charge!”

Bolsonaro-supporting truck drivers blocked Brazil’s highways in protest of Lula’s victory, with some calling for a military coup. Truck drivers are known to be one of Bolsonaro’s main voters, and when they close highways, they cause economic chaos in Brazil, the biggest food exporter.

Communications Minister Faria said Bolsonaro was working with his attorney general to determine measures to clear the highway.

As of Monday evening, some 236 protests in Brazil’s 20 states had partially or fully blocked roads, according to the Federal Highway Police. The blockade did not immediately disrupt food exports.

Lula has vowed to overturn many of Bolsonaro’s policies, including pro-gun measures and weak protections for the Amazon rainforest.

Environmentalists, world leaders and sustainable investors cheered Lula’s victory and his commitment to protecting the rainforest and restoring Brazil’s leadership on climate change.

Even before he takes office next January. On January 1, President-elect Lula will send a representative to the COP27 UN climate summit in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, next month, United environmentalist Marina Silva said on Monday.

In his victory speech on Sunday night, Lula pledged to vigorously regulate illegal logging, mining and land grabbing that have led to the dramatic destruction of the Amazon rainforest under Bolsonaro over the past four years.

Lula saw the game as a battle for democracy, promising to unite his deeply divided country and celebrate what he called a “resurrection.”

“I will govern for 215 million Brazilians, not just for those who voted for me,” Lula said at his campaign headquarters. “We are one country, one nation, one great nation.”

The Supreme Electoral Court (TSE) declared Lula to have won 50.9 percent of the vote, while Bolsonaro won 49.1 percent, making Bolsonaro the first sitting president of Brazil to lose a presidential election.

Brazil election Lula wins Brazil election

Lula’s victory cemented a new “pink wave” in Latin America, meaning the left will rule all of the region’s major economies following a string of electoral successes in recent years from Mexico to Argentina.

Argentine President Alberto Fernandez flew to Sao Paulo on Monday to meet the president-elect and praised “a new era in Latin American history. An era of hope and future that begins today”.

U.S. President Joe Biden was quick to congratulate Lula, calling the election “free, fair and credible.” The White House said Biden would speak with Lula on Monday.

Other foreign leaders also offered their congratulations, including China’s Xi Jinping, Russia’s Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Olaf Schultz and French President Emmanuel Macron.

But Bolsonaro’s continued silence has raised concerns about a power transition.

International election observers said Sunday’s election was conducted efficiently. An observer told Reuters that military auditors found no flaws in their integrity tests of the voting system.

Markets braced for a volatile week. The Brazilian real was up more than 2% against the dollar, while Bovespa (.BVSP) was up 0.6% in choppy trade.

Lula’s victory is a denunciation of the far-right populism of Bolsonaro, who emerged from the back seat in Congress to form a conservative coalition, but as Brazil becomes the deadliest in the coronavirus pandemic One of the serious countries and therefore lost support.

Lula has vowed to return to state-driven economic growth and social policies that have lifted millions out of poverty during his two presidencies.

A former union leader born into poverty, Lula, whose presidency was marked by a commodity-driven economic boom, left office with record popularity.

However, his Workers’ party has since been mired in a deep recession and a record-breaking corruption scandal that saw him jailed for 19 months on bribery charges that were overturned by the Supreme Court last year.

Reporting by Anthony Boadle and Ricardo Brito in Brasilia, Brian Ellsworth, Ana Mano, Gabriel Araujo and Lisandra Paraguassu in São Paulo; Writing by Frank Jack Daniel and Anthony Boadle, Editing by Brad Haynes, Angus MacSwan and Rosalba O’Brien

Our Standard: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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