A hundred entities in the area of law published this week an open letter in which they demand the appointment of a black jurist to the Federal Supreme Court (STF). Created 132 years ago, the STF has never had a black woman in its composition and throughout this period it only had three black male ministers among its staff. The last of them, Joaquim Barbosa, who retired in 2014.
“Although women have been present since 2000, there is no reason why a black jurist has ever sat on the Superior Court of the Judiciary. revealing the low intensity of Brazilian democracy”, says an excerpt from the manifesto, which is signed by organizations such as the Brazilian Association of Jurists for Democracy (ABJD), the Prerrogativas Group (formed by influential lawyers), Coletivo de Defensoras e Defensores pela Democracia, Association of Public Advocacy for Democracy, National Coalition of Women, among others.
In his third presidential term, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva will be able to indicate at least two new names. They will replace ministers Ricardo Lewandovski, who will retire in May of this year, and Rosa Weber, who will retire at the end of the year. The Minister of Racial Equality, Anielle Franco, said in a recent interview that she will defend to the President of the Republic the historic nomination of a black woman to the STF. It is up to the president to indicate the name to the STF, which then undergoes a hearing in the Federal Senate.
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Who stands out as one of the strong names among black jurists for the position is electoral lawyer Vera Lúcia Santana de Araújo, 62 years old. She was on a triple list drawn up by STF ministers to compose the Superior Electoral Court (TSE) last year. The name chosen by then-president Jair Bolsonaro, however, was that of lawyer André Ramos Tavares.
Vera Lúcia, born in Livramento de Nossa Senhora, southwest Bahia, has 40 years of experience as a lawyer, having coordinated the legal area of several political campaigns. She is currently part of the National Executive of the Brazilian Association of Jurists for Democracy (ABJD) and the Front of Black Women of the Federal District and Surroundings.
The lawyer is the granddaughter of a washerwoman and the daughter of a teacher. She arrived in Brasília at the age of 18 to study and has lived in the country’s capital since then. She was assistant secretary for Racial Equality in the government of the Federal District and executive director of the Foundation for the Support of Imprisoned Workers (Funap), also in the Federal District.
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Source: BdF Distrito Federal
Editing: Flavia Quirino
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