Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva became the 39th president of Brazil on Sunday following a chaotic transition period. Hundreds of thousands of Lula’s supporters, who were guarded by around 8,000 police officers, gathered to celebrate the inauguration.
Lula vowed a drastic change of course to rescue. Following the inauguration, Lula told congress that “democracy” was the true winner of the October presidential election.
Hundreds of thousands of supporters filled the central esplanade in Brazil’s capital, as President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva waved to onlookers from his motorcade on the way to his inauguration ceremony. https://t.co/a1wtZ8Wlk4 pic.twitter.com/auPxIhkAbm
— The New York Times (@nytimes) January 1, 2023
Lula, an ex-convict implicated as being China’s key to control over Brazil, is quoted as saying, “Democracy was the great victor in this election, overcoming,” Lula told lawmakers. “… The most violent threats to the freedom to vote and the most abject campaign of lies and hate plotted to manipulate and embarrass the electorate.”
Lula also delivered a chilling warning to his predecessor Jair Bolsonaro saying, “those who erred will answer for their sins.” Lula also accused the previous administration of committing genocide through its handling of the COVID-19 virus that killed nearly 700,000 thousand Brazilians.
“The responsibilities for this genocide must be investigated and must not go unpunished,” Lula said.
Lula’s inauguration comes at the back of what has been described as the most chaotic transition period in Brazil’s history. The transition period was characterized by violence and calls from Bolsonaro’s supporters for the military to take power.
Following Lula’s narrow “victory” in October, Bolsonaro supporters took to the streets of Brazil to protest the result. Some of Bolsonaro’s supporters have camped outside military buildings asking for the military’s intervention in what they insist was an election tainted with impropriety.
Bolsonaro, who was not present at the inauguration, reportedly spent the last day of his presidency in Florida. Bolsonaro addressed his supporters just before he left Brazil, telling them he had tried to find a legal alternative or enough support to change the course of history and prevent Lula from taking office.
“How difficult it has been to stay quiet for two months, working to find alternatives,” Bolsonaro said. “If you’re upset, put yourself in my place. I gave my life to this country.”