Congress should keep emptying Lula’s ministries

Congress should keep emptying Lula’s ministries

Despite the signaling of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s (PT) articulators to try to reverse the emptying of the Ministries of the Environment and Indigenous Peoples, the expectation is that the National Congress will impose new defeats on the government. The text of the Provisional Measure that deals with the restructuring of the Esplanada dos Ministérios should be voted on next week by the plenary sessions of the Chamber and the Senate.

This Friday (26), Lula held a ministerial meeting in order to try to minimize the crisis caused by the changes in the portfolios led by Marina Silva (Environment) and Sônia Guajajara (Indigenous Peoples). The government became the target of criticism after the petista was accused of having left the environmental agenda in the background to meet the interests of Centrão parties.

In addition to the two ministers, the meeting at Planalto was attended by the ministers of the Civil House, Rui Costa, of Management and Innovation in Public Services, Esther Dweck, of the Institutional Relations Secretariat, Alexandre Padilha, and of the Social Communication Secretariat, Paulo Pimenta . Government leaders Randolfe Rodrigues (Congress), Jaques Wagner (Senate) and José Guimarães (Chamber) were also present.

“The original concept of the points that were moved and that, in our opinion, is out of line with the policies that need to be implemented, that we can resume. Therefore, the original concept of those points that were modified, and the vote took place only within the scope of the committee, and we will continue to work so that these points [sejam revertidos]”, said Lulu.

The defeats of the Environment and Native Peoples folders occurred during the voting in the mixed commission that analyzes the MP. Despite the report promoting substantial changes in the portfolios commanded by Marina Silva and Sônia Guajajara, the government leadership did not vote against the text.

The government’s allies’ justification for this stance during the collegiate vote was that the Executive was in a hurry with the procedure, since the MP will expire on June 1st. According to Planalto members, Lula’s meeting was aimed at easing the crisis of recent days and honoring the two ministers.

In addition, the president indicated that the emptying of portfolios was due to the correlation of forces within the National Congress. The government supporters’ assessment is that the Executive has not yet consolidated its support base within the Legislative.

They also claim that the government had to give in, as they feared that resistance on the part of the Planalto would cause the MP not to be voted on and lose its validity. With that, the government would have the same structure as the management of former President Jair Bolsonaro (PL).

Planalto will try to negotiate with Congress MP recomposition

Among other points, the report approved by the mixed commission that analyzes the MP for the restructuring of the Esplanada removed from Marina’s portfolio the functions of the Rural Environmental Registry (CAR), responsible for controlling private lands and conflicts in preservation areas. Planalto’s expectation, however, is that it will be possible to revert this point before deliberation in plenary. The forecast is that the vote will take place until next Tuesday (30).

According to minister Alexandre Padilha, the changes proposed by the rapporteur are not going to make the work of the Lula government unfeasible on the environmental and indigenous agendas.

“The report does not end any ministry, does not end any body and does not deprive the government of the possibility of being able to implement its political agenda. We will continue talking in Congress and with the rapporteur to seek, until the vote in plenary, the improvements that we consider necessary”, defended the head of Institutional Relations.

Lula studies shared management between emptied ministries

Part of the government, however, already sees other changes in Marina’s portfolio as irreversible, such as the transfer of the National Water Agency (ANA) to the Ministry of Integration and Regional Development. The folder is commanded by Waldez Góes, appointed by Senator Davi Alcolumbre (União-AP).

In addition, the Environment folder lost control over the National Information System on Basic Sanitation (Sinisa), the National Information System on Solid Waste Management (Sinir) and the National Water Resources Management System (Singreh) . These functions were transferred to the Ministry of Cities, by Minister Jader Barbalho Filho, MDB.

Another point considered by the government as irreversible concerns the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples, led by Minister Sônia Guajajara, which lost its attributions regarding the demarcation of new indigenous lands. These functions were transferred to the umbrella of the Ministry of Justice, commanded by Flávio Dino.

Despite this, Lula is considering proposing shared management between the ministries to compensate for the losses of the two ministers. The internal evaluation is that this alternative would be a way for Planalto to “mitigate” the effects of Bulhões’s report while maintaining the changes proposed by Congress.

Lula wants to change the government’s agenda after attrition with environmentalists

In addition to a nod to Marina Silva and Sônia Guajajara, Lula’s meeting this Friday was aimed at outlining strategies to change the agenda with a positive agenda for the government next week.

“All gifts [na reunião] They left convinced of President Lula’s commitment to the agenda of sustainability, environmental protection and the protection of indigenous peoples. Sustainability is part of President Lula’s government as a whole”, minimized Minister Padilha.

Given this, the government’s expectation is to try to pass on to the electorate the tax cut for popular cars of up to R$ 120 thousand. The measure was announced by Lula and by Vice President Geraldo Alckmin (PSB), who is also Minister of Development, Industry, Commerce and Services, this Thursday (25). PT supporters, however, admit that the repercussion was lower than expected given the crisis caused by the emptying of the environmental and indigenous portfolios.

On another front, Lula hopes to launch “Desenrola” next week, a program that provides for the renegotiation of debts. The government’s expectation is that the measure will reach mainly middle-class voters.

All companies that join the “Desenrola” program will have to give some discount to debtors. The guarantee fund is BRL 10 billion to help renegotiate BRL 50 billion of debts of 37 million individuals, with bank and non-bank debts. The discounts will be greater for those who receive up to two minimum wages.

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