Brazil's famed carnival has kicked off early this year to the tune of “Our mockery's on the street, come along for the popular party, it's the Bearded Frogs laughing stock, the (judge Sergio) Moro will have to swallow!”
The initial part of this chorus line, courtesy of the carnival block, Bearded Frog, in the historic city of Olinda, coincided with the National Day of Mobilization in defense of democracy and the right for former president Luiz Inacio "Lula" da Silva to run as a candidate in this year's presidential election.
The ensemble continued: “We want justice free of persecution, the sovereignty of our nation, respect for democracy, the right of workers, whether they want or not, the Bearded Frog will participate in the election.”
According to the carnival block, which was created by members of the Worker's Party in the northeastern state of Pernambuco, the chorus is a cheeky way to contest the commercial media's narrative, distortions and manipulations surrounding Lula's court case and irregularities in the alleged purchase of a three-story apartment in Guaruja, Sao Paulo.
The street procession was welcomed and accompanied by local residents who sung and danced with revelers.
“Sapo barbudo” is an expression created by Leonel Brizola, one-time member of the Democratic Labor Party, who, along with Lula, disputed the presidential election in 1989.
Some argue that Lula's appeal trial was scheduled in a loathsome twist of planning by Brazil's Fourth Regional Federal Court, TRF-4. Jan. 24 marks one year to the date in which Lula's former wife, Marisa Leticia, suffered a stroke and passed away days later.
His defense lawyers, Cristiano Zanin Martins and Valeska Teixeira Zanin Martins, charged judge Sergio Moro with handing the former president a sentence void of “credible evidence of guilt being produced” and the “overwhelming proof of his innocence being brazenly ignored.”
They've since described Lula's legal woes as being a clear cut case of using the legal system to delegitimize or damage political foes.
Over the past few months, polls undertaken by Vox Populi, Datafolha, Data Poder 360, Instituto Parana, the National Confederation of Transportation/MDA and Ipsos have all shown that Lula enjoys a comfortable lead in Brazil's 2018 presidential election.