Brazil’s Federal Police commissioner Sérgio Menezes affirmed that there is already sufficient evidence that the Brazilian Speaker of the House, Severino Cavalcanti, demanded a payoff from the entrepreneur, Sebastião Buani, in return for renewing the concession contract for the Fiorella restaurant to remain functioning in the Chamber.
This affirmation was made by the commissioner after hearing the testimony of Izeilton Carvalho, who used to work for Buani, three waiters from the Fiorella restaurant, and Cavalcanti’s secretaries.
The commissioner pointed out that the Speaker enjoys legal privileges and that it will be up to the Federal Supreme Court to try and judge the case.
Cavalcanti is accused of charging the entrepreneur a bribe in 2002, when he held the post of first secretary of the Chamber of Deputies.
Brazilian Minister Jaques Wagner, of the Secretariat of Institutional Relations, commented that “there is no unqualified support” by the government in favor of Cavalcanti. “There is no unqualified support for Speaker Severino, when it comes to the investigative process,” he affirmed.
Regarding his visit to Cavalcanti’s residence, Monday (September 12) morning, the Minister explained that the call was to carry out the “task” of establishing relations with the other powers.
“President Lula has already made it plain that he thinks that everything must be investigated, regardless of party affiliation, first name, or last name – whoever is guilty must pay,” Wagner repeated in the Planalto Palace.
The Minister also informed that the President’s concern is for “the process to be resolved as quickly as possible, without entering into value judgments, to restore normalcy in the voting in the House.”
He reported that the President, after listening to an account, Sunday, September 11, on Cavalcanti’s press conference, “upheld the same position: We are not going to consider the question of merit.” He went on to say: “This is a matter for the House of Representatives. I believe that everything needs to be conducted with rigor, but with calm,” he insisted.