Letter from UNIFOR to the President of Brazil

Media Release

Michel Temer, Presidente da República Federativa do Brasil (President of Brazil): gabinetepessoal@presidencia.gov.br

Eunício Oliveira, Presidente do Senado e do Congresso Nacional (President of the Senate and the National Congress): eunicio.oliveira@senador.leg.br

Cármen Lúcia Antunes Rocha, Presidenta do Conselho Nacional de Justiça (President of the Justice Council): presidencia@cnj.jus.br

Cármen Lúcia Antunes Rocha, Presidenta do Supremo Tribunal Federal (President of the Supreme Court): secretariageral@stf.jus.br

Raquel Elias Ferreira Dodge, Presidente do Conselho Nacional do Ministério Público e Procuradora-Geral da República (President of the National Council of the Public Ministry and Attorney General of the Republic):presidencia@cnmp.mp.br>

Leandro Paulsen, Desembargador Federal Presidente da 8a Turma do TRF-4 (Federal Judge President of the 8th Class of TRF-4): gpaulsen@trf4.jus.br

João Paulo Gebran, Desembargador (judge): ggebran@trf4.jus.br

Victor Laus, Desembargador (judge): glaus@trf4.jus.br asp8@trf4.jus.br


On behalf of Unifor, Canada’s largest private sector union, representing over 315,000 members in all sectors of the economy, I am writing to protest of the imprisonment of former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, in violation of the Brazilian Constitution. This arbitrary arrest only serves to undermine democracy by denying the people of Brazil the right to choose who they want as president.

Lula has been subjected to a political persecution. The regional appeal court which found him guilty, Judge Sergio Moro and the “Car Wash” Federal Prosecutors have violated Lula’s rights to privacy, right to a fair trial, freedom from arbitrary arrest, the right to freedom of movement and right to be presumed innocent until found guilty.

The actions of the Brazilian judiciary in conjunction with the national media and political right, demonstrates to the world that Brazil does not operate under the rule of law, but the rule of expediency. To use the law to thwart the aspirations of the Brazilian people is, at best, a cynical exercise. To those outside Brazil, it looks like a continuation of the unwarranted impeachment of Dilma Rousseff in an effort to stop the hopes of an improved life for millions of Brazilians.

We call on the government of Brazil to comply immediately with its treaty obligations, and customary international law, and protect the fundamental rights to due process of law and to a fair trial, by pursuing immediately the following measures:

The immediate release of Lula, at a minimum, until the appeals process has been completed in accordance with the Brazilian constitution.
An impartial review of Lula’s case by judiciary not connected to the Temer government.
That Lula be allowed to run for the presidency in this year’s election.

Jerry Dias National President

cc: Valter Sanches, General Secretary – vsanches@industriall-union.org