Despite going into recess for the next two weeks, senators are considering calling a businessman who appears in a video released this Friday
Even on the eve of the parliamentary recess, the meeting between the former minister of Health, Eduardo Pazuello and intermediaries that offered the Chinese vaccine CoronaVac, reverberates among the senators who head the CPI to Covid-19. The majority of the commission said it will summon the businessman who appears in a video negotiating directly with Pazuello for the sale of the immunizing agent. The case was revealed by the newspaper Folha de São Paulo and it shows that the vaccine was being negotiated for almost triple the price of the Butantan Institute. The meeting would have taken place on March 11, days before the general left office. On May 19, however, the former minister was at Covid’s CPI and said that, as a minister, he had never negotiated with any company.
Senator Randolfe Rodrigues (Rede-AP) reinforces that this brings a contradiction in his speech. “Now we find out that the former Minister of Health himself participated in direct negotiations with vaccine intermediaries, and not with the laboratories, contrary to what he would have said to us in testimony to the Parliamentary Inquiry Commission itself. The CPI has new fronts from now on. The actions of these intermediaries, who set up fraudulent and corrupt schemes within the Ministry of Health,” he said. Governmentist Marcos Rogério (DEM-RO) says that the video shows transparency at the Ministry of Health and that it dismantles the opposition’s narrative that the government did not want to buy vaccines. “So far, no proposal has progressed without having the minimum conditions fulfilled. Another aspect that this video reveals is that the internal control within the Ministry of Health is working well: the proposal was made, however, it did not advance. All this accusatory narrative against the Ministry of Health and the current managers. It is unfortunate that this happens. Maybe they are judging the current government looking in the rearview mirror of time, imagining the Lula and Dilma administrations, where scandals and corruption happened all the time and in all places”, he affirmed.
The folder said that “the current management is not aware of the memorandum of understanding for the acquisition of doses from CoronaVac”. After the disclosure of the case, the director of the Butantan Institute, Dimas Covas, said that the Ministry of Health has known since last year that the Sinovac laboratory, linked to the São Paulo government, is the only one authorized to market CoronaVac in Brazil and Latin America . For him, the action shows that the Federal Government wanted to remove Butantan from the negotiations. In an interview with Patrícia Calderon, from Prime Time Zone News Fortaleza, senator Eduardo Girão (Podemos-CE) still sees excessive politicization in the work of the commission, as a whole. “I see a very clear anticipation of the 2022 political-electoral calendar, which I particularly think is inhumane, disloyal to the Brazilian population that suffers the terrible consequences of this pandemic in the health area, in the area of unemployment and hunger. Waging war in a political moment like this, which was supposed to be holding hands, making reforms, discussing second instance imprisonment, discussing the end of the privileged forum, does not seem to me like something from someone who is concerned with the country”, he said. Covid-19’s CPI stopped its activities this Friday, 16, as the National Congress goes into recess for two weeks.
*With information from reporter Fernando Martins