Brazil’s Senate began today the hearing of witnesses in Dilma Rousseff’s impeachment trial.
CCTV’s Paulo Cabral is following the story in Brasilia.
Heated Brazilian Senate opens impeachment trial of RousseffBrazil’s Senate began today the hearing of witnesses in Dilma Rousseff’s impeachment trial. CCTV’s Paulo Cabral is following the story in Brasilia.
Judgment of Dilma Rousseff in Brazil’s Senate began with a heated argument and shouting. It was triggered by the words of one of Rousseff’s key allies questioning whether her colleagues, many facing corruption allegations of their own, were in a position to judge the suspended president.
“What moral high ground does this Senate have to judge the president of the Republic? I want to know if you have the high ground. Half of the senators here don’t,” Workers’ Party Senator, Gleisi Hoffman said.
The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Ricardo Lewandowski, who’s also presiding over the impeachment process, decided to suspend the session so senators could calm down.
Only in the afternoon did the actual hearing of witnesses begin. The senators will hear the testimony of two witnesses for the prosecution and another six requested by the defense.
The first to speak was a servant from the Brazil’s Federal Court of Auditors, who said Dilma Rousseff did commit fiscal crimes.
The witness testimonies are scheduled for Thursday and Friday but the hearings could go into the weekend to make sure there will be no more delays in the impeachment process. However, analysts said they don’t expect anything they have to say will change the outcome of the senators’ ultimate vote.
“I believe the senators, they have already decided their votes before the witnesses process. But I believe it’s really important this moment for the Brazilian population to understand how important it is for democracy to follow the legal process,” Political Science Professor of Brasilia Catholic University, Creomar de Souza said.
On Monday of next week, Dilma Rousseff will come to the Senate floor herself to deliver a statement of up to 30 minutes before undergoing questioning by senators. On Tuesday the Senate will open the voting session which is likely to confirm the removal of Rousseff and her Workers Party from power.
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