Transparency International strongly denounces the unjust retaliations it is facing in response to its anticorruption work in Brazil. The situation has escalated to a disturbing level following the Supreme Court minister's order to initiate an investigation against Transparency International, based on unfounded allegations.
Minister Dias Toffoli's decision comes a week after Transparency International's publication of its 2023 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI), which highlighted setbacks in Brazil’s fight against corruption. Transparency International’s analysis specifically pointed to the minister's recent decision to invalidate all evidence from the Odebrecht leniency agreement and suspend the multimillion-dollar fine for large-scale corruption schemes against this construction group, now known as Novonor, and J&F investment, parent company of JBS - the world's largest producer of beef and chicken.
It is regrettable to witness legal action founded on groundless accusations and false information, supressing civil society's efforts to expose corruption and the unchecked influence of the powerful.
These baseless attacks, stemming from inaccurate claims and false information, assert that Transparency International received funds from the leniency agreements following Operation Car Wash - a corruption probe that exposed a massive corruption scheme within Brazilian state-owned enterprises nearly a decade ago.
Transparency International has never received, nor would it ever have any managerial role over any funds from such agreements. Our organisation, our Brazilian chapter, and Brazilian authorities have consistently refuted these false claims. Despite the readily available information, smear campaigns continue unabated and are, in fact, intensifying.
François Valérian, Chair of Transparency International, said:
"We express our full confidence in and support for our Brazilian chapter in the face of yet another attack. It is noteworthy that this investigation request coincided with the publication of the Corruption Perceptions Index a week before. The publication was accompanied by strong criticism from the Brazilian chapter, highlighting the judiciary's decisions that have perpetuated widespread impunity for large-scale corruption schemes affecting numerous countries.
These attacks underscore the crucial role of Transparency International's work in Brazil to keep power in check. We will not be intimidated, and our commitment to speak out against corruption remains steadfast."
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