Dilma Rousseff’s presidency was gilded at the outset. She inherited a country transformed. But it all began to unravel as Brazil’s fortunes reversed. Brazil’s economic woes, combined with allegations of fiscal malfeasance, would finish her presidency for good.
CCTV America’s Owen Fairclough reports.
Timeline of Brazil’s suspended President Dilma RousseffBrazil's economic woes, combined with allegations of fiscal malfeasance, would finish her presidency for good.
Tortured during the country’s military dictatorship, Rousseff was a left-wing activist who rose through the ranks of the Workers Party to become Brazil’s first female president.
She inherited her predecessor’s economic revolution that lifted millions out of poverty.
The year before Rousseff became President, Brazil’s growth was explosive-7.5 percent. After she took office it nearly halved, then nearly halved again the following year. Brazil’s economic boom ended with China’s slowing appetite for commodities.
There was still plenty of investment-hosting the World Cup in 2014 bore testament to that. But mass protests broke out as the government overspent and lost control of inflation before Brazil began its worst recession in more than 100 years.
This is the basis of the impeachment allegations. Rousseff was accused of using accounting tricks to make public finances look better than they were.
A bribery inquiry at state oil giant Petrobras grew into one of the biggest corruption scandals ever as dozens of executives were arrested.
Rousseff had chaired the company. She wasn’t accused of any crime, but promised to root it out as she celebrated re-election at the end of 2014.
It didn’t help. By early 2015 supporters and opponents were back on the streets in their tens of thousands, shouting a word that would soon make global headlines.
Efforts to impeach Rousseff gained momentum, while she ran the country and prepared for Latin America’s first Olympic Games.
She tried to block the process. But she was suspended from the presidency after the Senate voted to put her on trial for budget mismanagement.
Replaced by her vice president Michel Temer, she insists she’s the victim of a coup.
Rafael Saliés discusses the Rousseff interview
For more on the situation of suspended Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff and CCTV’s one-on-one interview, CCTV America’s Rachelle Akkufo spoke with Rafael Saliés, Brazilian Operations Director for Southern Pulse.