Brazil President Pledges Reforms and Dialogue after Massive Protests (Video)
Brazil’s president Dilma Rousseff pledged to introduce reforms in a televised address after hundreds of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets this week. Rousseff also added that she would meet with protest leaders to listen their demands.
Rousseff’s pre-recorded speech was broadcasted at 9pm local time on Friday where she said she had an obligation to listen to the voices on the streets and her government would create a national plan for public transportation in cities – a hike in bus and subway fares in many cities was the original complaint of the protests.
She also mentioned new reforms to be discussed on healthcare, education and government transparency.
For the last week, the country has been gripped by protests directed at the government over the quality of public transport, health care, education, low wages and corruption, particularly against the massive public spending on the World Cup and the current Confederations Cup.
On Thursday night, a million people joined the gatherings but small groups turned to vandalism, looting, smashing bus stops, shop windows and bringing down lamp-posts.
President Rousseff also referred to her own past as a guerrilla, who was tortured and imprisoned under the dictatorship, saying: “Brazil is fighting hard to become a more just country. It was not easy to get where we are. Only will it become reality if we strengthen this democracy. My generation fought hard so that the voice of the public be heard, the voices from the streets need to be heard and respected and should not be confused with the noise and the brutality of some hooligans.”
She has plans to meet with governors and mayors of the major cities in the coming days to address the protesters’ causes, possible solutions and the new reforms.
Image credits: Video, Al Jazeera, Brazil president unveils series of reforms.