Minister Rosa Weber, of the Supreme Federal Court (STF), authorized this Wednesday, 30, businessman Francisco Maximiano, a partner at the company Necessidade Medimentos, which brokered the contract for the purchase of the Indian vaccine Covaxin, to remain silent at the CPI of the Covid. His statement is scheduled for tomorrow.
Under the decision, the businessman will need to attend the interrogation, but may refuse to answer ‘potentially incriminating’ questions.
Called as a witness, Maximiano asked the STF to be raised to the status of investigated, which would free him from signing the term of commitment to speak the truth. The minister, however, said that the condition was not ‘demonstrated in a crystalline way’.
Rosa also authorized the entrepreneur to be accompanied by a lawyer during the deposition and made it clear that he cannot ‘suffer physical or moral constraints arising from the exercise of previous rights’. Maximiano had the secrets broken by the parliamentary commission.
Earlier, shielded by a similar habeas corpus, also businessman Carlos Wizard remained silent for most of the testimony at the CPI. Senator Omar Aziz (PSD-AM), chairman of the commission, said he intends to appeal the decision that guaranteed the safe-conduct.
The BRL 1.6 billion contract for the purchase of Covaxin was canceled by the Ministry of Health after suspicions of corruption and overpricing involving the acquisition of the immunizing agent were made public based on the testimony of federal deputy Luis Miranda (DEM-DF) and the brother of the parliamentarian, Luis Ricardo Miranda, who is head of import at the Ministry of Health’s Logistics Department and reported having suffered ‘unusual’ pressure to release the purchase of doses of the Indian vaccine.
The Federal Police and the Federal District’s Attorney’s Office opened investigations to find out if there was irregularity in the negotiations for the acquisition of the immunizing agent manufactured by the Indian laboratory Bharat Biotech.
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