Scandal involving Brazil president-elect’s son clouds inauguration


RIO DE JANEIRO – A lingering financial scandal involving Brazilian President-elect Jair Bolsonaro’s son has soured his inauguration next week and tarnished the reputation of a far-right maverick who surged to victory on a vow to end years of political horsetrading. Bolsonaro, who spent nearly 30 years in Congress, takes office on Jan. 1 after an electoral win that gave him a mandate to hobble violent drug gangs, cut through red tape to kick-start Brazil’s economy and go after the corrupt political class.

But a regulator’s questions about a bank account of the former driver of his son, Rio de Janeiro state lawmaker and Senator-elect Flavio Bolsonaro, has clouded his big day, leading critics to doubt the president-elect’s graft-busting credentials and his ability to deliver a new type of politics. Jair Bolsonaro, Flavio Bolsonaro and the former driver, Fabricio Queiroz, have denied any wrongdoing. “Ever since this case came to light, there has been a spectacle of evasions and unconvincing explanations on the part of the Bolsonaros … (about) an episode with relevant implications for national politics,” Brazil’s biggest newspaper Folha de S.Paulo said in an editorial on Thursday.(Reuters)…[+]