Brazil’s Social Democracy Party, PSDB, announced that it will no longer participate in the government of President Michel Temer.
Currently, the PSDB directs four ministries under Temer’s administration, including Foreign Affairs, Cities, Secretary of Government and Human Rights.
The announcement comes as the scandal-ridden leader faces corruption charges and a possible impeachment.
“During these last days, the party, without any imposition of the leaders (of the House and the Senate), is naturally evolving towards the departure of the government, not to oppose the government of Temer, but to stop participating in the government,” Tasso Jereissati, interim president of the PSDB, said to Globo television.
Temer is being accused of receiving and approving bribes in the largest corruption investigation in the country’s history, known as Operation Car Wash. Federal police launched an investigation against the former vice president and alleged that they had strong evidence that he was complicit.
The appointed president was one of the main architects of impeachment maneuvers against former President Dilma Rousseff after his right-wing Brazilian Democratic Movement Party left the governing alliance with the Workers’ Party, or PT.
Criminal charges against Temer have to be approved by about two-thirds of the lower house of Congress. A total of 341 out of the 513 lawmakers would have to vote in favor. Only then can the Supreme Court issue a conviction. If approved, Temer could be suspended for 90 days while awaiting impeachment proceedings.
The PSDB has experienced an internal split between those who believe that it is necessary to separate themselves from Temer and those who await more evidence and the outcome of his trail.
The party’s former head, Senator Aécio Neves, was removed from office in May by the Federal Supreme Court, but was later reinstated as part of the same corruption scheme investigation.