August 5, 2021

In Brazil, Bolsonaro’s image tarnished by scandals over the purchase of Covid-19 vaccines

He likes to present himself as the champion of the fight against corruption. A brave captain, simple and honest, battling against Brasilia’s “thieving” elites. But the image of Jair Bolsonaro is now seriously tarnished. The president of Brazil is now caught in the turmoil of a series of embezzlement scandals, involving the purchase of vaccines against Covid-19.

While 520,000 dead have already been counted and Brazil is preparing to face a third deadly epidemic wave, against the backdrop of an erratic vaccination campaign, revelations, published Tuesday, June 29 by several media, have created a shock wave rarely felt for two and a half years and the start of Jair Bolsonaro’s mandate.

The first scoop appeared in the leaf from S.Paulo. The country’s leading daily publishes an interview with Luiz Paulo Dominguetti, representative of the company Davati Medical Supply, which is supposed to act as an intermediary for negotiations on doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine. The latter assures us that a senior official, Roberto Dias, in charge of logistics within the ministry of health, would have demanded from his firm the payment of copious bribes to conclude the purchase of immunizers. by the Brazilian government.

Suspicious invoices

The article recounts through the menu this “offer” made during a dinner held on February 25 in an opulent restaurant with subdued lights in Brasilia. The head of the ministry, accompanied by a mysterious ” army soldier “, and a ” entrepreneur ”, Would then have required 1 dollar (0.84 euro) additional per purchased dose, for a contract for 400 million doses. ” If you want [nous] selling vaccines, that’s how you have to go about it ”, Roberto Dias would have insisted, faced with the refusal of his interlocutor.

The second revelation came from the magazine Crusoe and, for its part, concerns the import of doses of Covaxin vaccine, produced by the Indian firm Bharat Biotech. In its article, the magazine reveals that an MP, Luis Miranda (Democrats, right), for his part, has also been offered bribes on several occasions, between March and May, this time from lobbyists. health sector working with government.

Suspicious invoices, overbilled doses, lack of data, shady front companies, pressure “Atypical and excessive” in order to conclude the agreement as quickly as possible… the “Covaxin negotiations” indeed contained many irregularities. Worried, MP Miranda, alerted by his own brother, working as a senior official in the Ministry of Health, brought the case before President Jair Bolsonaro in March. Behind the scenes, the shadow “negotiators” are worried. They offer the MP (who says he declined) a juicy offer in exchange for his silence: $ 1.2 million in bribes (or $ 0.06 for each of the 20 million doses negotiated).

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