AMERICA/BRAZIL - “Stop the corruption!”: the heartfelt appeal of Brazilian Bishops [AF]

Brasilia (Agenzia Fides) - “Stop the corruption!” is the heartfelt plea expressed by Brazilian Bishops in a letter, a copy of which was sent to Fides. The Bishops from the Council for Pastoral Care (CONSEP), gathered in Brasilia, at the headquarters of the Brazilian Bishops’ Conference (CNBB), published a letter which is dated December 10, on the occasion of the World Day to Combat Corruption. “We expect people to say ‘enough is enough’ to the shameful situation of corruption in our country,” the Bishops said, analyzing the situation of the country and showing how a large number of voters have been betrayed by those they elected because of their illegal conduct in public affairs. Corruption lies at the national, regional, and municipal levels and in all three branches of government - executive, legislative and judiciary - the Bishops said, noting that cases of blatant corruption constantly come from these areas. Lately, in the Federal District, state officials elected to promote the common good were found to be enjoying the fruits of their crime: “It causes even more repulsive to know that these people join in a blasphemy in the form of a prayer, asking that God be their accomplice in the theft.” The Bishops call the politicians and state workers to work conscientiously in their service for the good of society, because “corruption undermines democracy, which gives the people the principle of power.” The Bishops call for vigorous action and draft bills to punish those involved in these acts, “we remember the more than 1,500,000 voters who had submitted to the National Congress the bill known as ‘Ficha Limpa,’ that calls for changing the law so that it is impossible to elect those prosecuted in the first degree for serious crimes. We stress the urgency of voting on this bill in Congress.” The letter concludes with a prayer that politicians be faithful to the mandate of the common good of Brazil. The document is signed by the President, the Vice-President, and Secretary General of the Conference of Bishops of Brazil. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 11/12/2009)

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