By Lise Alves, Senior Contributing Reporter
SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL – The impeachment of Brazil’s President, Dilma Rousseff moved a step closer on Wednesday (April 6th) after a report by the Chamber of Deputies special commission to look into accusations of wrongdoing by the head of state concluded there are legal grounds for impeachment.
After almost four hours of reading the document, Representative Jovair Arantes concluded his report by stating that the impeachment request ‘fulfilled all legal and political conditions concerning its admissibility’.
Arantes, asked by the committee to review the charges and render an opinion noted however, that the final decision as to whether or not President Rousseff may be impeached would not be made by Brazil’s Lower House but by the Senate.
The reading of the report was interrupted at several moments with groups pro and against the government shouting either “There will be no coup” and “There will be impeachment”.
The discussion among the 65-member commission extended into the evening hours with debates on whether the members will hold Congressional sessions throughout the weekend so that every representative has a chance to speak before the commission votes on the report on Monday at 5PM. If the Monday vote is favorable to the impeachment proceedings, the vote will go before the entire Lower House and then the Senate.
According to analysts, pro-government representatives are concerned that this ‘weekend session’ will open up a precedence for the weekend of April 16th when the entire Lower House is expected to vote on the impeachment process. Officials are worried Congress will be surrounded by pro and against government demonstrators and that security forces will not be able to control the crowds.
President Rousseff is accused of mismanagement of public funds and authorizing the federal government to obtain loans from state-owned financial institutions to artificially decrease the government’s deficit in 2015. The government has denied any wrongdoing.