The federal government released an advertising campaign called “Brazil cannot stop” to encourage people to leave their homes in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic and return to work. The initiative is part of the strategy of Palácio do Planalto to reinforce President Jair Bolsonaro’s narrative that it is necessary to resume activities to reduce the impacts on the economy. The guidance goes against the recommendations of health organizations around the world, which defend quarantine as the most effective way to prevent the spread of the disease. Parliamentarians and mayors threaten to go to court against official advertising.
The campaign also runs counter to restrictions imposed – to a greater or lesser extent – on the 27 states and at least 23 capitals in the country, such as the closing of schools, shops and churches. According to a report by the British BBC network, some 70 countries in the world have enacted some type of isolation measure. According to the agency France Presse, the restrictions affect at least 2.8 billion people, which represents more than 1/3 of the world population. The World Health Organization (WHO) does not have an official survey.
The password for Bolsonaro supporters to broadcast the campaign was given last Wednesday (25), when the government released a post on Instagram with the hashtag # OBrasil NãoPodeParar “.” Almost all of the deaths occurred with the elderly. Therefore, it is necessary to protect these people and all members of the risk groups, with great care, affection and respect. For these, isolation. For everyone else, distance, extra attention and a lot of responsibility. We will, with care and awareness, return to normality “, says the text.
On the night of last Thursday (26), a video with the same motto and with the mark of the federal government was released by Senator Flávio Bolsonaro (without party-RJ), the president’s son, on social networks. The campaign began to circulate in bolsonarista groups on WhatsApp with the following message: “I will pass on first hand the propaganda that the federal government will run from tomorrow.” Government officials also sent the material to their contacts.
The 1-minute, 27-second video shows scenes of workers at work with a narrator in the background repeating the campaign theme. “For street vendors, engineers, marketers, architects, bricklayers, lawyers, private teachers and service providers in general, Brazil cannot stop,” says the narration.
The federal government’s propaganda resembles a campaign carried out in February by the city of Milan, Italy. The mayor of the city, Giuseppe Sala, acknowledged that he made a mistake by spreading the slogan “Milan does not stop”. The city is one of the most affected by the pandemic in the European country, which yesterday surpassed the mark of 5,000 killed by the disease.
A group of parliamentarians, which includes Senator Alessandro Vieira (Cidadania-SE) and Congresswoman Tabata Amaral (PDT-SP), said yesterday that they will file a lawsuit with the Supreme Court (STF) against the campaign. The argument is that the play contradicts specialists and is a crime for damaging the health of Brazilians. In a letter sent to the president, the National Front of Mayors also demanded explanations and threatened to go to court.
The Presidency’s Communication Secretariat said in a statement that the video was “experimental in character” and “that there was no expense or cost” in its production. Secom also informed that the video is not related to the hiring for R $ 4.9 million of an advertising agency without bidding.
Members of the Planalto Palace attributed the disclosure of the video to a leak in the secretariat itself, led by Fabio Wajngarten – who is in quarantine after being contaminated by the covid-19.