An Astonishing Comeback
Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (b. October 27, 1945) has returned to the Presidency of Brazil after 12 years. Jailed for corruption and banned from running for President… Lula has tackled these two obstacles in order to become the President of the largest country in Latin America, yet again, at the age of 77. His victory in the great war of Brazil’s turbulent politics is a historic achievement in every sense. As far as the percentage of received votes is concerned, the gap between Lula and incumbent President Jair Messias Bolsonaro (b. March 21, 1955) is less than 2%. Lula did not get any chance to fight on an equal footing; as he had to fight not against a person, but against the entire State Machinery.
A reckless and desperate Bolsonaro tried his best to win the Presidential Polls by using the State Power. The local media reported that supporters of Bolsonaro’s Liberal Party and the Police obstructed voters from reaching polling stations in the northeastern region of the country, known as the support base of Lula, on the polling day. The Trump of the Tropics even hinted that he would not accept the result, if lost the election, in advance. However, his trickery and strategy have failed to stop the return of Workers’ Party leader and former President (2003-10) Lula to power. Hence, the outcome of the Presidential Polls can be considered as a resurgence of the former Trade Unionist.
The defeat of Bolsonaro, the first sitting President to lose re-election bid in Brazil since the 1990s, is a great relief not only for his country, but also for the entire world. In the past four years, Brazilians have witnessed Bolsonaro’s racist attitude, extreme indifference to the interests of underprivileged citizens, and backward mentality on issues, like gender equality and sexuality. Furthermore, countless citizens of Brazil have become victims of his indifference in dealing with COVID-19 Pandemic, as the toll of COVID-19 in the Latin American country has virtually surpassed every other country.
How Lula will run the country is a different issue. Right now, Brazil (as well as the world) is all set to be freed from the grip of Bolsonaro. Under his direct initiative, the deforestation of the Amazon has reached an unprecedented level in the past four years, triggering an increase in Global Warming. It also has a negative impact on biodiversity. Environmental experts are of the opinion that if the process of destroying the tropical rainforests, often called the Lungs of the Planet, goes on for a few more months; it will be impossible to prevent extreme disasters. Immediately after winning the election, Lula announced that his administration would stop the destruction of Amazon. The Planet Earth will await the fulfilment of this promise.
Lula has also promised to restore the overall condition of his country. The biggest hope is that he has reportedly said his Government would safeguard the interests of “all the people” of Brazil. This statement shows his political maturity. The newly-elected President is well aware of the fact that half of the Brazilian population voted in his favour. Hence, to take an impartial position is not just a matter of morality for him, but a question of pragmatism. He cannot run the country from the viewpoint of the class position of bookish Leftism or trade union politics. Now, Brazil expects Universally Applicable Politics from Lula.
Lula has to be much more moderate and cautious than his previous terms as President. The global economic situation has become more unfavourable compared to the first decade of the 21st Century. There is a possibility of global recession in the post-Pandemic world. The veteran and experienced Lula must have known that his administrative success would be no less difficult than his electoral success.
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