Lula da Silva will return to Brazil’s presidency in stunning comeback victory to end 20 years of military dictatorship
Former Brazilian President Lula da Silva speaks from his hospital bed
He had been in critical condition in the intensive care unit of a Rio hospital since he underwent surgery to remove a lesion on his brain in February
Lula, who had been president in the 1990s, was re-elected in October to a second five-year term.
He had been in critical condition since a brain hemorrhage. His wife, Cida, has been by his side since then and he has been unable to speak or move in any way.
The 74-year-old from southern Brazil said he was ‘a prisoner of conscience’ but said he hoped to live out the rest of his life with Cida in Brazil and to ‘fight for the rights of the Brazilian people’.
‘I am a prisoner of conscience. It is not for me to decide whether to stay in this city or to leave it. We have a constitution, there is no need to hide what you are doing and what you are feeling. It does not cost anything. There has to be no violence,’ Lula, now a free man, said in a televised address from his hospital bed.
‘I have been a president of the Brazilian people since 1995 and, despite all the negative things that go with the job, the thing that interests me most is not in front of me. I love my country. My country loves me. Brazil is my country. This is a victory of love. To me, it is inconceivable that the dictatorship end one day without a fight. Democracy is for everyone.’
The outgoing Brazilian president, who served as a military dictator for 20 years before being forced to leave office a year and a half ago, will return to Brazilian politics to a joyous reception in Sao Paulo.
The ex-leader of Brazil’s leftist Workers Party has spent the last year in poor condition in a Rio hospital after a brain bleed
Former Brazilian President Lula da Silva (pictured) will announce his political comeback this weekend in a victory speech in Rio de Janeiro
Lula’s left-wing Workers’ Party has seen its support down from 41 per cent in 2013 to less than 9 per cent in the last election in October, according to exit polls.
Lula is currently recovering from a brain hemorrh