Embarrassing little sentence of Lula on president of Nicaragua, Daniel Ortega

The leader of the left, favorite of the next presidential in Brazil, triggered a controversy after an interview with “El Pais”, in which he defends the authoritarian leader.


His tour in Europe has been described as “triumphale” by the press. But for Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, the return to Brazil is otherwise more complicated. The Left Leader, great favorite of the next presidential, is today in the center of an embarrassing controversy to his relatives Allied. The object of the dispute: the position for the least ambiguous of the former metallo on the authoritarian regime of Daniel Ortega in Nicaragua.

Originally, there is an interview, granted on November 20 to the Spanish daily El Pais. On the subject of Nicaragua, where Daniel Ortega was re-elected on 7 November, for a fourth term, at the end of a “farce” or “simulacre” process by observers, Lula is first consensual: “All politician that begins to think that it is essential and irreplaceable begins to become a small dictator. “

But quickly, the tone changes. “That being said, we must defend the self-determination of the peoples. Why can Angela Merkel remain sixteen years in power, and Daniel Ortega no? (…) What is the logic in there?”, Then wonders clumsily. ‘former president. Awarding response of the journalist: “Angela Merkel has remained sixteen years in power, it’s true. But she has never put his opponents in prison.”

Visibly embarrassed, the head of the Workers’ Party (PT), 76, ends up recognizing that Daniel Ortega “wrongly”. But the damage is done. And the little sentence instantly triggers the furie of the right and a discomfort in a part of the left, while Brazil still lives under the threat of a coup of President Jair Bolsonaro.

predictable output

In the “green salon” of the Congress of Brasilia, equivalent to the room of the four columns at the Palais-Bourbon, in Paris, rare are the members to agree to comment on the declarations of the “chef”. “Lula tends the stick to be beaten,” deplores a frame of the PT. “I do not understand why he says such bullshit!”, Gets an intellectual close to the party. The bolsonists, they play on velvet: “Why do not you do it?”, “Lance Twitter, Spanish, General Augusto Heleno, right arm of the current head of state.

Coming from an old opponent to the dictatorship, the exit can surprise. But it is actually very predictable. The PT has never distanced its distances with the old “brothers” left, today at the head of authoritarian regimes, such as Nicaragua, Cuba, Venezuela or even communist China, recently qualified by the ex -President Dilma Rousseff of “light in front of decodency and darkness crossed by Western societies”.

A year of the presidential election, the controversy could cost voices to the old metallo, who tries to attract the moderate electorate, scalded by Jair Bolsonaro. “The PT is against dictatorships, but only when they are right (…), it continues to grow links with the worst regimes of our continent and the world. Can we really believe in his commitment to democracy?”, went to wonder José Pinheiro da Fonseca, Liberal and editorialist economist at the Folha de Sao Paulo.

/Media reports.