by Ricardo Brito
BRASÍLIA (Reuters) – The president of the Supreme Court, Luiz Fux, said on Wednesday that failure to comply with court decisions is a crime of responsibility, a day after President Jair Bolsonaro threatened in an act of 7 September not to comply with further determinations of the STF minister Alexandre de Moraes.
“The Federal Supreme Court will also not tolerate threats to the authority of its decisions. If contempt for judicial decisions occurs at the initiative of the head of any of the Powers, this attitude, in addition to representing an attack on democracy, constitutes a crime of responsibility, to be analyzed by the National Congress”, he said, in a speech at the opening of the plenary session .
In a harsh speech, Fux said that there are narratives of “discrediting” the Supreme and its members that have been “gravely diffused by the head of the nation”.
“Offending the honor of ministers, inciting the population to spread hate speeches against the institution of the Supreme Court and encouraging non-compliance with judicial decisions are undemocratic and illicit practices, which we cannot tolerate in respect of the constitutional oath we made when assuming a seat at court,” he said.
Since the day before, ministers of the Supreme had been internally discussing the reaction to the speech made by Bolsonaro at the events in Brasília and São Paulo. He mainly attacked ministers Alexandre de Moraes, who conducts sensitive investigations against him and those close to him, and Luís Roberto Barroso, who is president of the Superior Electoral Court (TSE).
In his speech, Fux extolled the independence of the magistrates and stressed that no one will close the Supreme Court – some protesters the day before held up posters and made statements to that effect.
“No one will close this court. We will keep it standing, with sweat and perseverance”, he said.
“In the exercise of its role, the Supreme Court will not tire of preaching fidelity to the Constitution and, in doing so, this court will reaffirm, throughout its perennial existence, its necessary commitment to democracy, human rights and respect for the Powers and institutions of this country”, he reinforced.
Again without citing Bolsonaro, Fux called on the country’s leaders to address the real problems plaguing our country.
“The pandemic, which is not over yet and has already claimed 580 thousand Brazilian lives; unemployment, which drives the citizen to the limit of biological survival; inflation, which erodes the income of the poorest; and the water crisis, which threatens our economic recovery”, he enumerated.
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