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Brazilians protest against corruption


Rio de Janeiro : Thousands of people demonstrated Tuesday in downtown Rio de Janeiro against corruption in a citizens’ mobilization convened via Internet social networks.

Participating in the protest, which was held on the Cinelandia plaza, once the scene of huge demonstrations against Brazil’s 1964-85 military dictatorship, were several thousand people, organizers said.

Mounted on a truck with loudspeakers, the leaders of the demonstration insisted that the protest was not against any particular party but rather against the corrupt practices of politicians in general.

Dozens of signs were displayed during the event bearing slogans such as “Clean up Congress” and “Brazil is a gigantic country governed by a pack of rats”.

The demonstrators brought to the protest 594 brooms painted green and yellow, the colors of the national flag, which represent every one of the country’s 81 senators and 513 lower house members.

Those brooms on Monday had been placed on the Copacabana beach by a civic organization to ask Congress to take action against corruption.

Complaints of corruption have spread in recent months to the executive branch and led to the resignations of four ministers of President Dilma Rousseff, who has also lost another member of her Cabinet, the defense chief, for making his differences with the administration public.

Rousseff, who took office last Jan 1, since June has replaced her chief of staff and the ministers of agriculture, transportation and tourism over corruption allegations, a show of firmness that has generated public support for her.