Leftist Movement that Started Protests in Brazil Criticizes President Rousseff

Free Fares MovementThe Brazilian leaders of the “Free Fares” movement that triggered the worst wave of street protests in two decades rocking the Brazilian government to its foundations said their meeting with President Dilma Rousseff was ‘unsatisfactory’ because there were “no concrete proposals”.

“Dialogue is an important step, but without any concrete actions which ensure the improvements the people are demanding, there is no advance,” said Mayara Vivian, one of the identified leaders of the spontaneous group that have been protesting for over two weeks in a hundred Brazilian cities.

This Monday Rousseff proposed calling a plebiscite to implement a raft of political reforms in response to the wave of demonstrations.

But despite the announcement and in statements to Folha de S. Paulo, the leaders of Free Fares revealed that the presidency paid for the four tickets from the industrial hub of Brazil to Brasรญlia to hold a meeting with Rousseff.

According to the leading Sรฃo Paulo daily, the group told the president that she must press Congress to approve the constitutional amendment, which makes public transport a ‘social right’, but Rousseff only promised to check on the federal grants and costs destined for transport.

The Free Fare movement that took off with the demonstrations last June 6 and which rapidly spread to most of Brazilian cities, support free public transport.

“If there’s money to build stadiums for the World Cup, then there must be ‘zero fare'” said Mayara Vivian. The group left the Planalto Palace, seat of the Executive anticipating that demonstrations will continue.

“Protests and peaceful demonstrations will continue until we obtain our objective, ‘zero fare'” said the group of leaders, who before meeting with President Rousseff made public an open letter ironically expressing their ‘surprise’ at the ‘dialogue gesture’ from the government.

“We are surprised by the invitation to the meeting. We imagine that you are also surprised with what has been happening in the country in recent weeks. This dialogue gesture from your part contradicts the treatment received by social movements under current policies of this administration,” begins the letter calling for ‘zero fares’.

“Transport can only be public if it is accessible to all; that is understood as a universal right. Questioning the fares increase is questioning the very logic of the fares policy which has public transport exposed to the profits of the transport owners and not the needs of the people”, continues the letter.

They also express disagreement with the removal of taxes as demanded by the transport companies and that Brazil must invest eleven more times in individual transport with major public works and credit policies for the consumption of vehicles, than on public transport”.

“Giving up taxes means losing power over public monies, awarding blindly resources to the transport mafias, with no transparency or controls”, points out the letter from the Free Fares movement that was started in 2005, in the framework of the World Social Forum held in Brazil.

Finally the group rejects the criminalization and repression of the demonstrations “which, after all are the only reason why the Presidency has invited us.

“This meeting with the president was forced by the people in the streets, who dared to advance despite tear gas canisters, rubber bullets and all sorts of pressures and police resources.”



  • Show Comments (7)

  • Avnatika

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  • Simpleton

    Your constipation doesn’t allow?
    If the local authorities don’t rule or control things well (or are perceived as not ruling or controlling well), does that mean we have to have a county wide, state wide, nation wide or world wide rebellion over simple things?

    Joao, please do check your local ordinances. If they don’t disallow it, I doubt your state or national laws do.

  • Joรฃo da Silva

    Simp, mah kudos for writing a great essay, accusing everyone (including and especially) my honorable self for denouncing you as a “pariah” of this site. To honor ya, I clicked the green plus sign.:-)

    [quote]Joao, I would be happy to dutifully serve under asp as Vic-Mayor in your communidade if I am given the right to vote him into office first (or as it would be, FORCED to vote for someone / anyone, which as you might understand goes against my grain). As a descendant of outcasts pursued under threat of life and limb, lawbreakers as it were (for illegally NOT attending the Church of England’s services), I think I would be a good contrasting element for aspโ€™s team. [/quote]

    Re your serving under ASP, ah ain’t too sure if our constitution allows 2 Gringos to occupy such posts in our city. But…but…but…ah can always consult my lawyer and give you both some guidance.:-);-):D;-)

    Cheers and keep up your good spirits.

  • Simpleton

    more than a dono(r) ????
    My apologies to whomever’s article this post ultimately succeeds in getting posted to, but understand it’s getting to the point of being very very personal regarding not letting my voice be heard.

    Reply to Nilton: Last I discovered was that Ricky was more than just a donor of articles to this site, apparently he is the (, or one of many) owners. Didn’t like what I wished to post to his article and so it has been blocked many many many times – censorship by the Brasilian elite me thinks. In cohoots with joao, etc., etc., etc. Although it has been edited slightly from the first version I tried to post as a comment to his article. Here’s what some “administrator” continually sees fit not to let get posted:

    Although Joao seems to have carte blanche and can say some libelous things about people and post at will, the site has not been posting my comments (keeps coming back with something about message added but needing to be reviewed by an administrator which translated means it never appears). This has been going on for quite a number of weeks and I have also noted the site has tried to push viruses to my machine. I’ll keep trying but it seems joao / ricky or others have some kind of serious prejudice against me although it might also explain why we don’t see anything from (the real) asp, LC, Lpp, Eddie, et. al., herein anymore either. (post post edit – the real asp has apparently returned)

    Joao, I would be happy to dutifully serve under asp as Vic-Mayor in your communidade if I am given the right to vote him into office first (or as it would be, FORCED to vote for someone / anyone, which as you might understand goes against my grain). As a descendant of outcasts pursued under threat of life and limb, lawbreakers as it were (for illegally NOT attending the Church of England’s services), I think I would be a good contrasting element for aspโ€™s team.

    I need your help OM. I’ve searched and searched but I’m not able to come up with a translation of Mr. Limpo Po’s moniker that you originally seemed enamored of but turn around and indicate it’s ok when you use it but it’s somehow something nasty and insulting when I do. I’m always running into colloquial brasileiro and faveladze terms and phrases I just don’t understand. It’s not in my nature to be insulting to anyone, least not intentionally.

    Lastly, Ricky, I did do as promised and read through your article. Thank you very much. It could use a touch of editorial restructuring in a few small sections but other than that, good job! I did note that within your article you did mention the source of your information on life expectancies and lifetime travel distances as being James Burke (TV series?). At the time I would have been more involved in Jacob Bronowskiโ€™s written works and those of some of the classic philosophers (a couple of which you mentioned).

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  • Simpleton

    Holy of Holy’s
    I had no clue just how powerful Ricardo C. Amaral was until it became clear he completely blocked me from posting on articles appearing on brazzil.com, including his own which I was trying to pay a compliment to. Forget these sites and their associated sites. They are dirty and if your anti-virus / anti-mal-ware software and databases are not kept up to date – they will infect you! Inbred Power Mongering Bastard! (IPMB)

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