Sao Paulo metro strike to continue Monday despite court ruling

admin   •   June 10, 2014   •   2412

A soccer fan holds a Brazilian flag in front of two policemen outside Ana Rosa subway station during the fifth day of metro worker’s protest in Sao Paulo June 9, 2014.
CREDIT: REUTERS/KAI PFAFFENBACH

(Reuters) – Sao Paulo’s metro workers voted to stay off work for a fifth day on Monday even after a court declared the strike illegal, complicating preparations for the World Cup opening match.

Another vote on the strike was scheduled for Monday at 1 p.m. local time (1600 GMT), after a rally in downtown Sao Paulo in which they will be joined by homeless’ workers and other social movements.

“The (metro workers’) union sent an official request to President Dilma Rousseff asking her to help the category reopen talks with the (Sao Paulo) state government,” which controls the subway system, the union said in a note on Sunday.

A court on Sunday set a 500,000 reais penalty ($223,000) for each day they stay off work from Monday. It also declared the strike illegal, paving the way for state-owned Companhia do Metropolitano de Sao Paulo to lay off striking workers.

Metro workers’ demand a 12 percent pay rise, but Metro has offered 8.7 percent.

With major subway lines closed since Thursday, commuting in Brazil’s largest city has been chaotic.

The strike snagged several FIFA officials in over two hours of traffic as they arrived for a conference ahead of the World Cup last week, which kicks off with a Brazil v Croatia match in Sao Paulo on Thursday.

On Friday, police used tear gas to break up a demonstration blocking access to one metro station. [ID:nL1N0ON0UG]

Frustration with broken promises and the ballooning cost of new World Cup stadiums contributed to widespread protests that drew over a million Brazilians into the streets during a warm-up tournament last year. This year, the largest demonstrations so far have been from homeless groups and striking workers using the backdrop of the World Cup to press their causes.

($1 = 2.24 Brazilian reais)

(Reporting by Silvio Cascione and Camila Moreira; Editing by Bernard Orr)

Brazil’s Bolsonaro says vaccine will be free and non-mandatory

Marje Pelayo   •   December 9, 2020

President Jair Bolsonaro

BRAZIL — President Jair Bolsonaro said vaccines for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) will be free of charge and non-mandatory for the whole population of Brazil after it acquires certification from regulatory agency ANVISA. 

“We will protect the population by respecting their freedom, and not using it for political purposes, putting their health at risk because of personal gains,” Bolsonaro wrote on Twitter on Tuesday (December 8).

The Ministry of Economy assured that there will be no shortage of resources and every Brazilian will be attended to. 

“Once certified by @anvisa_oficial (scientific guidelines and legal precepts), @govbr will offer the vaccine to all, free of charge and not mandatory,” President Bolsonaro added.

Brazil ranks third among countries in the world with the highest number of COVID-19 infections after registering more than 6.6 million cases.

The South American country also records the second heaviest death toll worldwide with more than 177,000. MNP / Beth Pilares

PH envoy to Brazil could face charges for staff abuse

Marje Pelayo   •   October 28, 2020

Philippine Ambassador to Brazil Marichu Mauro

MANILA, Philippines — Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddy Locsin Jr. on Wednesday (October 28) vowed to address ‘to the fullest extent of the law’  the incidents of physical abuse by former Philippine Ambassador to Brazil Marichu Mauro against her household staff.

In a series of tweets, Locsin said the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) will be “firm in meting out the appropriate sanctions and administrative or criminal charges” on the former envoy if results of the investigation on the matter would demand as such.

Locsin broke the news of Mauro’s recall from post on Monday (October 26).

The incident of physical abuse by Mauro against her staff was aired over Brazilian news outlet GloboNews with dates listed on the video footage as taken in March, August and October this year.

As the Philippine Ambassador to Brazil, Mauro also held concurrent jurisdiction over Colombia and Venezuela.

READ: PH envoy to Brazil recalled over alleged maltreatment of staff — DFA

DA lifts temporary ban on mechanically deboned poultry meat from Brazil

Marje Pelayo   •   September 7, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture (DA) announced Monday (September 7) that it is partially lifting the temporary importation ban on mechanically deboned poultry meat (MDM) from Brazil.

This, after the agency conducted a review of the measure based on available information provided by Brazilian authorities. 

The Brazilian government submitted documentary requirements ensuring the strict implementation of plans for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) prevention, infection control and occupational safety and health relative to the operations of foreign meat establishments. 

Agriculture Secretary William Dar clarified however, that the lifting of the temporary import ban only applies to  foreign meat establishments without a single worker that is COVID-19 positive.

The importation must be accompanied by a veterinary health certificate which proves that the meat was handled and processed in facilities with functional food safety management system and where stringent hygiene and sanitation measures are practiced. 

Likewise, the poultry products must carry a safe handling label and all importation must be for the sole use of an accredited meat processor. 

The DA warned that all shipments into the country that do not comply with the above conditions shall be confiscated.

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