The prime minister considered insulting the accusations made by the president of the PSD regarding the choice of university professor Pedro Adão e Silva as executive commissioner for the commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the 25th of April.
In Publication on his official Twitter account, Rui Rio wrote that the choice of Pedro Adão e Silva to head the executive committee for the 50th anniversary of the 25th of April is a “compensation” by the PS for the comments made in the media.
“The PS has its ‘independent commentators’ spread across the different channels to sell socialist propaganda and try to destroy opponents … but this little job comes at a price. It was time for Pedro Adão e Silva to receive compensation. We pay us; with our taxes”, criticized Rui Rio.
Confronted by Lusa agency with this position of the social-democrat leader, António Costa replied: “It’s such an insulting statement that, out of respect for the opposition leader, requires me to ignore“.
Choice was endorsed by Marcelo and is “very consensual”
The President of the Republic also said this Tuesday that the Government’s choice of Pedro Adão e Silva as executive commissioner for the commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the 25th of April had his approval and considered it “very consensual”.
Asked by journalists about this choice, during a walking tour in the municipality of Câmara de Lobos, in Madeira, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa replied: “It was a choice of the Government, but with my approval”.
The head of state described Pedro Adão e Silva, university professor and political commentator, who was a member of the national leadership of the PS during the leadership of Ferro Rodrigues, between 2002 and 2004, as “a political scientist, even more than a historian, attentive to reality contemporary country, very consensual”.
“Although predominantly on the center-left than on the right, but very consensual within the framework of a date such as 25 de Abril, which will certainly have a very varied support structure. I don’t see the reason in terms of competence and qualification and even knowledge of the Portuguese reality to be questioned”, he added.
The choice of Pedro Adão e Silva for these functions was contested by the president of the PSD, Rui Rio, who pointed him out as “a person markedly from the PS, who has been on television for many years always defending the positions of the Government and the PS and the permanently attack the oppositions”.
But also the president of the CDS-PP, Francisco Rodrigues do Santos, contested the choice, considering that it “insules the Portuguese”, qualifying Pedro Adão e Silva as “one of the protégés of ‘socialistan’, widely known as a spokesman for socialist propaganda”.
“António Costa, I demand that you choose someone else, preferably with an indisputable curriculum for the position, drastically reduce the costs and duration of this commission”, wrote Francisco Rodrigues dos Santos in a note sent to journalists and posted on social networks.
Faced with this controversy, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa stressed that “the name that belongs to the President is that of the National Commission” for the commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the 25th of April, which will be presided over by former head of state António Ramalho Eanes.
“They already know that the president is Ramalho Eanes, who was proposing names, and even the number of members of the National Commission, which I will obviously accept, whatever names he proposes,” he added.
According to the President of the Republic, “this structure in three commissions is a sensible structure”, with Ramalho Eanes at the head of the National Commission, “which has the decisive word on the program”, then “a structure for monitoring and advising where the military of Abril will have a strong presence” and “an executive structure that has to be naturally younger”.
When questioned if he considers this controversy to be pointless, he replied: “I don’t know. You know that democracy means that no two opinions are alike about anyone. There are those who do not like it, there are those who do, it is part of the logic of democracy”.
“I see no substantial reason to [Pedro Adão e Silva] not exercise this function with the qualities that are necessary: knowledge of matter, inventive imagination. It is relatively young compared to the 25th of April period, but this is offset by the fact that there are older figures who lived the 25th of April and, therefore, compensate for this generational issue”, he considered.
Pedro Adão e Silva was a member of the PS National Secretariat between 2002 and 2004, under the leadership of Ferro Rodrigues, and soon after abandoned party life.
On May 27, the Council of Ministers approved the creation of a mission structure to organize the commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the 25th of April, which marks 2024, appointing Pedro Adão e Silva as executive commissioner.
Pedro Adam Silva he is an assistant professor in the department of political science and public policy at ISCTE, director of the Doctorate in Public Policy at the same institution and a commentator in various media such as TSF, RTP or Expresso.
In addition to the mission structure, a National Commission, chaired by the former President of the Republic, Ramalho Eanes, will work with the Presidency of the Republic, which will have the responsibility of “approving the official program of the commemorations and the activity reports”.