When conducting President Dilma Rousseff's defense at the impeachment special committee in the Senate, Finance Minister Nelson Barbosa pointed out technical and fiscal data that supported the arguments for the allegations.
One of the charges is that the government has increased expenses by issuing spending decrees without the congressional authorization.
Barbosa explained that all six spending decrees mentioned in President Rousseff' impeachment request, totaling $27.4 billion, were based on funds reallocation, excessive collection, or financial surplus.
The finance minister explained that this type of document is not numbered because they are not considered a norm and this measure has been adopted since 2002, during Fernando Henrique Cardoso's administration. Nevertheless, he noted that these decrees were published in the Official Gazette. "There is no secret," he pointed out.
Barbosa also explained that the spending decrees do not create a new expense, just rearrange expenses based on the revenue.
The minister reaffirmed that Rousseff's administration made large contingencies fund and made large cuts in expenses at same month in which the decrees were issued. "The budget is an authorization for when and where the government can spend the money. It is a reveue forecast." According to him, this is reason for the government to realocate the funds throughout the year, to match the financial limit to the fiscal target.
"These spending decrees had not authorized, at any moment, to increase financial expenses," he added.
Barbosa also said that the Congress passed into law the revised fiscal target. "Where is the irregularity? The fiscal target was reached. The ladies and masters changed it and the target was reached," he noted.
The finance minister concluded his statement rejecting the arguments offered by the impeachment request." I consider that there is no legal basis for ousting the president of the Republic," he said. He added that the points raised against the president "were questioned, answered, and solved in 2015".
The impeachment request challenges the legality of delays in government's transfers to state-run banks to fund the payment of welfare benefits, like Bolsa Famíliaconditional cash transfers program, unemployment insurance, and employee bonuses. With the delays, the government's accounting practices would show lower expenses until the Treasury sent resources to state-run banks. Rousseff's defense denies illegalities reported in the impeachment request.
According to Nelson Barbosa, there was no act of the president and he denied that the delays have happened. For him, this is a balance, created when a resource is made available to a farmer, for example, at a rate of 6%, but paid to the banks providing resources at a rate of 8%. The difference in this rate is funded by the government. Nelson Barbosa reported that this funding is approved by the National Congress, and authorized and controled by the National Monetary Council and the Ministry of Finance. "It is not an act of the president," he declared.
Translated by Amarílis Anchieta
Fonte: Agência Brasil.