The movement that began on Tuesday (17) in some Brazilian cities, gained momentum again on Wednesday (18) and many different regions of the country registered “panelaços” (pot banging as a protest) against Jair Bolsonaro’s government. On Twitter the hashtag “Fora Bolsonaros” (Bolsonaros out) was first among trending topics globally. On the top ten list of most commented topics in Brazil was the tag “Panelaço against Bolsonaro”.
The reaction by the population is a response to the former army captain’s posture during the coronavirus crisis. While health professionals within the government issue daily alerts about the spread of the disease in the country, the president has belittled the problem. Since last week, Bolsonaro has stated various times that the reaction to the virus has tones of hysteria.
He has also criticized the recommendation that the populous avoid large public gatherings. On Sunday (15) he attended a protest against the National Congress and the Supreme Court without a mask, shook protesters hands and took pictures with them. In the city of São Paulo, some neighborhoods had “panelaços” that lasted for over half an hour. At least ten districts within the city witnessed protests, and in some cases, people played instruments and projected images on buildings. In the Santa Cecília area, a large image of Bolsonaro incorrectly wearing a face mask was displayed on the side of a building.
Protests were held all over the city, including in the Heliópolis community, the city’s largest slum. In Brasília, Ceiândia, Samambaia, all areas that were built up through settlements and affordable housing, there were lots of demonstrations. In Rio de Janeiro, at some of the biggest slums they not only banged pots, but also played live music.
In the Federal District, middle class neighborhoods also saw protests, among them some Bolsonaro strongholds like Águas Claras, where the president won the vote by a large margin. In Curitiba, capital of the state of Paraná, where over 70% of the population voted for Bolsonaro, the central district was also overcome by a “panelaço” and yelling.
Cities all over Brazil were also overcome by demonstrations against the president.
Edited by: Rodrigo Chagas