Brazilian federal prosecutors opened a civil inquiry yesterday hoping to stop the Jair Bolsonaro administration from transforming September 7 Independence Day celebrations into an electoral rally.
The Federal Prosecution Office warned the Defense Ministry about the “necessity to preserve the respect between the branches of government.”
President Jair Bolsonaro is at a traditional military parade in Brasília. In the same place, an anti-democratic event called by his supporters is scheduled to follow. In Rio de Janeiro, military parades were moved to happen on the Copacabana Beach promenade — where pro-Bolsonaro supporters will demonstrate against the Supreme Court and the country’s voting system.
Many of the president’s supporters attending such events ask for the closure of the Supreme Court and a Bolsonaro-led “military intervention” in Brazil (a dog-whistle term for a self-coup).
“Measures must be taken to avoid an official event being mistaken for a partisan endeavor,” the prosecutors say.
Additionally, the inquiry warns the president’s communications office against pressuring civil servants to attend civic events. The move follows reports that the government actively distributed tickets to the Independence Day stands in Brasília.