Religion has always been a central part of Marcelo Crivella’s political life. Before winning the mayoral race in Rio de Janeiro nearly two years ago, he was a bishop at the controversial Universal Church of the Kingdom of God – an evangelical denomination present in 110 countries and with over 10 million followers across the globe. The church has been accused of a wide range of crimes, from embezzlement to human trafficking.
When he ran for mayor, though, Mr. Crivella tried to avoid being dubbed as the “evangelical candidate.” He was, in his own words, a mayor “for all residents of Rio.” Apparently, though, Mr. Crivella has failed to separate his administration from religious groups – which could see him pushed out of office. He faces two impeachment requests after O Globo, a daily newspaper from Rio de Janeiro, revealed that Mr. Crivella offered public services to evangelical pastors.