The death of Brazil’s presidential candidate Eduardo Campos to the October election has appalled all of his fellow politicians. Campos was a member of the Brazilian Socialist Party (PBS) and died in a crash involving a Cessna 560XL this Wednesday, August 13.
Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff, who is running for re-election, has canceled the appointments in her campaign schedule for three days. She received the news at the Palácio da Alvorada, the president’s residence, where she spent the morning.
Opposition candidate Aécio Neves, from the Brazilian Social Democracy Party (PSDB) also called off his electoral campaign and traveled to Santos, the coastal town where the accident took place. He learned about Campos’s death shortly after landing in Natal.
“It is with great sadness that I received the news of the accident that victimized former governor and friend Eduardo Campos. Brazil has lost one of his most talented politicians, who has always fought with idealism for his beliefs. This is an irreparable and incomprehensible loss. At this moment, my family and I unite in prayer for Eduardo’s family, his friends and the millions of Brazilians who surely partake in the same perplexity and grief,” Neves said.
The presidential candidate from the Green Party (PV), Eduardo Jorge, also released a note announcing his grief over the incident. “PV’s presidential campaign for the next few days is suspended. This loss is very sad for the country. Eduardo Campos was a very young and very important leading figure for Brazil,” he noted.
The Brazilian Socialist Party put out a note expressing its grief over the death of its presidential candidate Eduardo Campos, who was killed in a plane crash, along with six other people.
“Campos was going through the high point of his brilliant career in politics: he had been a state deputy, the state secretary of Pernambuco, a federal deputy, a state ministry, the governor of Pernambuco, re-elected by a consecrating majority, and placed his experience and youthful vigor at the disposal of his country”, the release reads.
In the text, PSB leader Roberto Amaral underscored Campos’s political coherence based on principles like social justice. “We lost Eduardo Campos when Brazil most needed his patriotism, selflessness, undauntedness and competence. It’s not just the PSB, but all of Pernambuco and its people lose their leader. It’s Brazil that loses a young and promising man.
According to the Fire Department, the aircraft crashed around 10 am in a residential area in the Boqueirão neighborhood in Santos.
The Air Force Command says the aircraft, a Cessna 560XL, prefix PR-AFA, took off from Santos Dumont Airport in Rio de Janeiro, bound for Guarujá Airport. When preparing for landing, the pilot started a go-around procedure due to bad weather. Then, the air traffic control lost contact with the aircraft.
The Air Force said it has started investigations to establish the circumstances leading up to the crash.
Rousseff has declared a 3-day period of official mourning. In an official note, the Brazilian president said that the entire country grieves, and that Campos was a paragon of democracy and political leadership. “We’ve lost a great Brazilian today”, she declared.
Rousseff said that she and Campos had shared a long history in their careers, and that occasional political divergences would always be “smaller than the mutual respect that was part of our lives as colleagues.”
On offering her condolences to the victim’s family, Rousseff said that Campos was an exemplary father and husband. “At this moment of deep grief, my feelings are with Renata, Campos’s partner, and his much loved children. I’m profoundly saddened,” she stated.
Rousseff’s chief of staff Gilberto Carvalho, also expressed his grief over Campos’s death and praised the late politician. “I had the privilege of being close to him and witnessing his skills at work and, above all, at making friends – these were very distinct characteristics of his personality.”
President Dilma Rousseff has made yet another pronouncement concerning the death of presidential candidate Eduardo Campos. On television, she pointed out that Campos was “promising politician who could reach the country’s highest positions,” adding that regardless “of our divergences, we’ve always maintained a relationship based on mutual respect.”
The president said she hopes that the example set by the untimely deceased candidate serves to keep him alive in the memories and hearts of Brazilians. She also stated that she had not yet had a chance to talk to Campos’s family, but offered them the support of the federal government.
In a note issued previously issued, Rousseff mentioned the 3-day period of mourning and the suspension of her appointments for the same duration. “Brazil will now weep the death of this great Brazilian,” she said.
Lula and Cardoso
Former Presidents Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and Fernando Henrique Cardoso have also expressed their grief over the death of Campos.
“The country loses a public man of rare and extraordinary quality. I was delighted to be able to rely on his intelligence and hard work in the years in which he was our Minister of Science and Technology. Over the course of his life, Campos struggled to make Brazil a more just and dignified country,” Lula said through a note issued by the Instituto Lula.
He extended his feelings of “compassion to his relatives and also to the relatives of his team as well as crew members who passed away in this terrible accident.”
On his Facebook page, Fernando Henrique also showed regret over Campos’s death. “No words can ease the losses. Nonetheless, I convey my condolences, my feelings of sadness and grief to the relations of the victims of the accident.”
Cardoso further noted that he had always held the former governor of Pernambuco in great respect, and that it is the country that will suffer most bitterly for the bereavement.
“Just when we need young and competent leaders, we lost one of our best. His national career was just beginning. Regardless of whether or not he would win the election, he would be a leader for the political reform of which we are so much in need. It’s a irreparable loss,” he stated.
Eduardo Campos, who died at 49, governed the state of Pernambuco from 2006 to 2014 and was the Ministry of Science and Technology during Lula’s first term of office, and also a federal deputy for Pernambuco.
At an interview held on Wednesday afternoon, August 13, Eduardo Campos’s running mate Marina Silva showed her grief over his death in a plane crash that took place late this morning. She said that Campos was actively engaged in the defense of his beliefs “all the way to the end of his life.”
Emotional, Marina offered her feelings of compassion to the family of Campos and the four advisors that were also on board, and reported that “over these ten months of working together, I learned to respect and admire him, and to trust in his actions and the values that guided him.”
Ex-Minister of the Environment, Marina joined Eduardo Campos after she unsuccessfully tried to create her own political party. While talking to journalists, she attempted not to mention the substitution of the former candidate. She described her partnership with Campos by saying: “Together, we started to build up, above all, the hope of a better and fairer world.”