Presidential candidate Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva released another letter to his supporters today in celebration of May Day - telling them to "continue to resist together because we’re in this just cause for democracy, for the rights of the people."
Lula, who has been detained in the federal jail in Curitiba, Brazil since April 7 for supposedly receiving an apartment as a kickback in the national Car Wash corruption scandal, denounced the attack on his Free Lula demonstrators last Saturday camped out outside Lula’s prison as long as he’s been in jail.
"I’m indignant regarding this new attack on those who are fighting for justice in our country," said Workers’ Party president, Gleisi Hoffmann, reading Lula’s letter to the Curitiba crowd. In his letter, Lula added that he’s "sending a hug of solidarity to Jefferson (Lima de Menezes) and Marcia (Koakoski) and their families who are suffering with them. I too suffered."
On Saturday an armed man attacked the Free Lula encampment at around 4:00 a.m. local time shooting Lima de Menezes in the neck. Koakoski took shrapnel from the hit. The unknown attacker approached the crowd in a car shouting, "(Jair) Bolsonaro for president" referring to a far right-wing candidate who is polling at 15 percent of the vote, far behind Lula’s 31 percent. Bolsonaro also played an important legislative role in ousting Brazil's president and wife of Lula, Dilma Rousseff.
"We don’t know who shot but we know he was prepared by forces that disseminate hate and political violence," Hoffman read to the thousands of Lula supporters gathered in Curitiba.
Lula said in his letter: "each day the Globo (media) network poisons the country with its lies about the (Workers’ Party), leftist comrades and social movements. … I’ve been a militant for 50 years and I’ve never seen an affair like this in Brazil."
Brazilian cities are flooded with thousands of May Day protesters demanding better employment and Lula’s release. Vagner Freitas the head of the Central Workers’ Union says that judge Sergio Moro, in charge of the Car Wash hearings wants to "impede (Lula’s) victory" for the presidency.
While presenting the book, Lula: The Truth will Win at Brazil’s National Book Fair in Sao Paulo last night, Rousseff told the crowd, "free or in jail, Lula will be elected president of Brazil."
Lula has lost several appeals on his 12-year sentence but has until August to register as an official candidate for the country’s October presidential polls.