One of the main topics of the week in political circles was the collaboration between President Lula (PT) and Governor Tarcísio de Freitas (Republicans) in the announcement of the construction of the Santos-Guarujá tunnel with the alignment of the project and the division of investments in the work, which will be carried out jointly between the federal and state governments.
But the governor of São Paulo refuted part of the president’s speech at the event celebrating the 132nd anniversary of the Port of Santos (SP), mainly due to Lula’s criticism of the port administration privatization process, discarded by the PT government.
The Port of Santos privatization project was studied during the Jair Bolsonaro (PL) administration, of which Tarcísio was part of as Minister of Infrastructure. But at the end of 2023, the port was officially removed from the National Privatization Plan with the Ministry of Ports and Airports taking over the port authority, despite the high private investment in infrastructure and the need for concessions for the operation of specialized companies.
During the speech, Lula stated that “the narrative was established by sectors of the economic elite to destroy the image of the State and public power” that business management is more efficient than public administration.
“The idea that the State is worthless. The idea that the governor doesn’t have to have an idea. The idea that we will be dolls in their hands who present to us what they think should be done. But we are the ones who were elected by the people and were insulted. We won and have the right to govern this country the way we understand”, he criticized.
According to the president, the federal government can show that it is possible for the sector develops further with the maintenance of the state administration of the Port of Santos. “We want to prove that the port authority will do as much or more than any businessman could do,” said Lula.
Asked about his alignment with the president, Tarcísio replied that he maintains his liberal convictions and that the partnership with the federal government for investment in infrastructure does not mean “political alignment” or “equal thinking” as the PT president. “I continue to be liberal and have my beliefs to achieve results, just as they have their beliefs. They are divergent visions but in the end we want to achieve a common goal”, she responded during the press conference.
The governor recalled Lula’s speeches about privatization at the event and pointed out that the search for Private capital brings fundamental investments for the country’s economic and social development. “This is good for the citizen who is at the forefront and creates more jobs. His vision is different. Okay, we have to respect it. Wherever possible, we will have convergence to benefit the citizen”, explained Tarcísio.