Brazil’s Minister of Justice, Márcio Thomaz Bastos, defended political reform for the sake of strengthening democracy and combatting corruption in the country.
“No democracy functions well without strong, independent parties and mechanisms to control the influence of economic forces on the electoral process,” the Minister affirmed during his address to the 4th Global Forum to Combat Corruption, in Brasília.
Earlier this month, President Lula determined the creation of a group formed by three Ministers: Aldo Rebelo (Political Coordination), Luiz Dulci (Presidential Executive Office), and Jacques Wagner (Economic and Social Development Council), under the coordination of Minister Bastos.
The group has 45 days to discuss the strengthening of parties, improvements in the rules of the electoral system, and public financing of campaigns.
Bastos says he plans to gather proposals from and draw on the experiences of universities, social movements, productive sectors, and government and opposition representatives.
“Based on these contributions and the debates they produced in the National Congress, we shall present a proposal capable of taking this decisive step towards a more authentic and well organized representative system.”
Referring to the activities of the Brazilian government in the war on corruption, the Minister emphasized the role of the Federal Police, which is, in his view, an institution that is working “as never before to combat the diversion of government funds.”
According to the Minister, 49 operations were carried out, resulting in the arrest of 1,006 people, including 465 civil servants.
“In just four operations to stop crimes against the administration, the Federal Police dismantled gangs that had already diverted more than US$ 1.09 billion (R$ 2.7 billion) from government coffers.”
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