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The Portuguese government escapes the censorship of Parliament, but not the succession of controversies


The socialist majority which supports the Portuguese government of Antonio Costa is preparing to reject Thursday, January 5 a motion of censure submitted to the vote...

The socialist majority which supports the Portuguese government of Antonio Costa is preparing to reject Thursday, January 5 a motion of censure submitted to the vote of Parliament by a small liberal formation to denounce the chain of controversies and resignations within the executive.

The motion, doomed to failure, was presented by the Liberal Initiative party in reaction to the resignation last week of the Minister of Infrastructure and Housing, Pedro Nuno Santos, embarrassed by a case around a severance package of 500,000 euros paid to a former manager of the public airline TAP appointed a few months later Secretary of State for the Treasury.

The Prime Minister acknowledged on Monday that this had "

shocked the country

" and sought to end the controversy by announcing a mini-ministerial reshuffle, supposed to guarantee the continuity of his government's action in the sensitive file of TAP Air Portugal.

But, as of this Thursday, a new case came to further weaken the executive, this time involving the new Secretary of State for Agriculture, the day after she took office.

Frozen bank accounts

According to the popular daily Correio da Manha, Carla Alves has had her bank accounts frozen since last March as part of a corruption investigation targeting her husband, former mayor of Vinhais (north-east).

Read alsoIn Portugal, Elisabeth Borne relies on culture to imprint her style

Before the case of the Secretary of State for the Treasury dismissed less than a month after taking office, a Deputy Secretary of State to the Prime Minister had to resign two months after his appointment for having been implicated in a case of embezzlement he allegedly committed when he was mayor of Caminha (north).

In power since the end of 2015, the Socialist Party has won a Legislative: Portugal relies on Antonio Costa last, but despite the absolute majority that has supported him since, Antonio Costa has failed to breathe new life into his government, stumbling over the pile of cumbersome belongings.

In total, its executive has already seen the departure of a dozen of its members in less than a year, and had already been confronted with a first motion of censure presented by the far-right Chega party.

The main opposition Social Democratic Party (PSD, centre-right) was expected to abstain in Thursday's vote, but is calling for the resignation of Finance Minister Fernando Medina, accused of negligence for appointing the former leader of TAP Air Portugal as Secretary of State for the Treasury.

Following the mini-reshuffle unveiled on Monday, Conservative President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, who has the power to dissolve Parliament, warned that his patience had limits: "

If it doesn't work, we will draw the consequences


Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2023-01-05

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