More than 60 cities in Minas Gerais joined together to participate in the 24J demonstrations against President Jair Bolsonaro and for widespread vaccination. Among them, the small municipality of Carrancas, in the south of Minas Gerais. However, unlike other occasions, last Saturday’s protest (24) was the scene of controversy and aggression.
It all started when the mayor of Carrancas, Hely Alves (PTB), arrived at the protest concentration. According to reports, the chief executive approached the demonstration and destroyed posters that were on display. The attitude generated revolt among the protesters, who called the police, as there were public security agents accompanying the mobilization.
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With the turmoil, the situation began to be registered by the city councilor Cláudia Nogueira, better known as Prof. Claudinha (PCdoB). Upon realizing that he was being filmed, the mayor slapped the parliamentarian and threw her cell phone on the floor. Then again, he tried to stop filming.
“That is inadmissible. The mayor acted with abuse of authority. He has the characteristic of imposing the policy of persecution, rude and violent treatment with those who are against his opinions”, vents the councilor. After what happened, she filed a police report about the case. “We will not be silent. We know that the fight is tough, but we will continue to defend collective rights”, he adds.
what does the mayor say
Sought to comment on the case, the mayor informed our team, through a note, that “the municipal administration of Carrancas and the mayor respect the right to free expression”, but that he does not tolerate the “use of public goods and religious properties of the municipality”, in demonstrations, putting their preservation at risk.
On the accusation of violence, the note informs that “the mayor tried to talk to the protesters, in order to have such objects removed, when a protester, imbued with a maddened fury, tried to physically attack the municipal mayor.”
Recently, the mayor’s name was also highlighted in a complaint made by environmentalists in the city about the dismantling of the Municipal Council for the Defense of the Environment (Codema). According to an investigation in the article carried out by Carta Capital, the action is aimed at favoring mining companies, which have coveted and harassed the region for years, as well as companies linked to agribusiness.
The matter became the agenda for a public hearing at the Legislative Assembly of Minas Gerais (ALMG) and is now being investigated by the House and also by the State’s Public Ministry. In response to the case, state deputy Beatriz Cerqueira (PT) sent requests to the ALMG Public Administration Commission, demanding an explanation from the mayor about the Codema situation and also about the possible impacts of the construction of a motocross track and a silo of soybean storage can bring to the municipality.
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In order to preserve natural assets, especially the city’s aquifer reserves, the deputy also proposed the Bill 2,934/21 which institutes waterfalls, complexes and mountain ranges as heritage of the municipality and the people of Minas Gerais, and restricts predatory activities in the city.
Movements articulate a note of solidarity
In solidarity with the protesters in Carrancas and in an attempt to avoid future attacks and impediments to the free right to demonstrate, organizations articulated a note in repudiation of the mayor’s attitude. The document is signed by entities such as the Frente Brasil Popular, the Landless Rural Workers Movement, the Movement of People Affected by Dams, the National Forum for the Democratization of Communication and several other organizations.
Source: BoF Minas Gerais
Edition: Larissa Costa