Rio for Peace aim to sweep away corruption with protest on Copacabana beach

By 20 September, 2011

594 brooms were planted in Copacabana beach today as a protest against corruption. The number of brooms represented Brazil’s 81 senators and 513 members of the Lower House, and were planted by Rio for Peace, an NGO calling for transparency in the country.

Rio for Peace are helmed by Antonio Carlos Costa who explained the idea as such:

“The purpose of our initiative is to make people aware of the extent of rampant corruption and to demand greater transparency in the management of public funds, since the deviation of funds is responsible for the death of thousands of Brazilians”

Each broom has a yellow pole and green bush, representing the national colours. There was only one banner accompanying all the brooms, clearly stating “National Congress helps us sweep out corruption in Brazil”.

The protest has occurred after an uneasy period for Brazilian politicians in which five have recently stepped down, albeit only four on alleged corruption charges (the fifth was for bad language – “in the cabinet I’m surrounded by a bunch of idiots”).

Rio for Peace are expecting further protests in the coming weeks as their campaign begins to get more exposure. Costa outlined the objective of Rio for Peace further by stating:

“We need a greater social control over Legislative and Executive actions because that control is currently limited to political parties that hold their own meetings and decisions, while the people can just look with crossed arms. Our peaceful protest is geared to get people to the streets so that huge absurd sums of public funds wasted, deviated, ill spent are channelled to infrastructure, schools, medical attention among other purposes.”

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