Brazil's electoral court to discuss Lula candidacy Friday afternoon

Brazil's electoral court to discuss Lula candidacy Friday afternoon

Brazil's electoral court to discuss Lula candidacy Friday afternoon

His legal team has said they will appeal against the court's decision. The statement was released after most TSE ministers chose to ignore a decision by the United Nations Human Rights Committee and deprive former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of his right to run as a presidential candidate for the upcoming elections.

Former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has been barred from Brazil's October presidential election by the country's electoral court despite easily leading in the polls - a ruling that adds uncertainty to the race to lead Latin America's largest nation, leaving no clear favourites.

Brazil's top electoral court ruled on Friday that jailed former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva can not run in this year's presidential election due to a corruption conviction. His party workers have registered him as its presidential candidate for the October 7 vote claiming he is innocent.

"We will present all appeals before the courts for the recognition of the rights of Lula provided by law and worldwide treaties ratified by Brazil".

He denied wrongdoing and said his conviction was part of a plot to prevent him returning to power.

The court decision dropped late in the night but before the spots of presidential hopefuls were set to broadcast.

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Supreme Court Justice Luis Roberto Barroso cast the first vote, saying barring da Silva was "very simple" due to the conviction and upheld the appeal.

Nonetheless, UN committee member Olivier de Frouville told AFP that Lula should be allowed to "organize and campaign, even from jail". The court also banned the leader from campaign advertisements.

The end of Lula's candidacy opens the electoral field to runner-up Jair Bolsonaro, a right-wing former soldier whose platform includes gun legalisation and weaker environmental regulations.

While justices were debating, the Workers' Party put out ads on its social media channels featuring da Silva, holding to a strategy to keep the former president front and centre as long as possible.

But the PT's second choice looks hopeless.

But the PT's plan B looks hopeless as former Sao Paulo governor Fernando Haddad, who will stand if Lula is barred, commands little popular support. But whether Lula can transfer his popularity to a replacement remains to be seen. The PT launched an appeal for support on Twitter, after which a hashtag translating to "Lula on the ballot box" quickly began trending.

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