Political turmoil in Brazil refuses to die down as another Cabinet minister in the Michelt Temer-led government resigned on Monday over leaked recordings that imply he was involved in helping cover up the Petrobras scandal. The person is, ironically, Brazil's Transparency Minister Fabiano Silveira and his job profile requires him to take action against corruption.
The Ministry of Transparency officials on Monday stopped Silveira from entering the office building, and resigned en masse in protest against President Temer's decision to keep Silveira on for the time-being.
"Temer's initial decision was that Silveira can continue in his post for now because he did not interfere in the investigation, he was just giving [Senate leader Renan Calheiros] Calheiros advice," a spokesman for Silveira was quoted as saying by Reuters.
The recording broadcast by Brazil's Globo TV was recorded by Sergio Machado, an ex-senator and former head of the transportation arm of Petrobras. Silveira is reportedly heard advising Calheiros on how to respond to Brazilian federal prosecutors regarding the Petrobras investigation. The conversation took place when Silveira was a counsellor on Brazil's National Justice Counsel that acts as a watchdog over the judiciary, Reuters reported.
Another Cabinet minister, Senator Romero Juca, was forced to resign last week after a recording by Machado was released. Juca is heard negotiating pacts across parties as multiple politicians from various parties are implicated in the Petrobras scandal, to squash the investigation.
It has been almost three weeks since Temer took over from suspended president Dilma Rousseff, who was accused of breaking budget laws and his interim government has been facing accusations of attempting to stop the investigation around kickbacks received by politicians. Multiple top executives have turned into approvers for reduced jail terms in the case.