Home World Americas News Dilma Rousseff Impeachment: Chamber of Deputies Votes to Start Proceedings

Dilma Rousseff Impeachment: Chamber of Deputies Votes to Start Proceedings

Brazil’s lower house, Chamber of Deputies, has voted to start impeachment proceedings against President Dilma Rousseff.

Dilma Rousseff is accused of manipulating government accounts.

The “yes” camp comfortably won the required two-thirds majority, after a lengthy session in the capital.

The motion will now go to the upper house, the Senate, which is expected to suspend Dilma Rousseff next month while it carries out a formal trial.

The 68-year-old president denies tampering with the accounts to help secure her re-election in 2014.

Her ruling Workers’ Party has promised to continue its fight to defend her “in the streets and in the Senate”.Dilma Rousseff impeachment 2015

Dilma Rousseff’s opponents secured 367 votes in the lower house – exceeding the 342-vote mark needed to send the motion to the Senate.

The “no” camp secured 167 votes, while seven other deputies abstained. Two deputies were not present during the voting.

Voting began after passionate statements from lawmakers and party leaders in a session broadcast live on television as well as on large screens in city centers.

If the Senate votes for impeachment, Dilma Rousseff will be put on trial in the upper chamber and will be removed from office permanently if found guilty. She has two opportunities to appeal during the whole process.

Hundreds of thousands of protesters watched the voting marathon on huge TV screens in cities across the country – Dilma Rousseff’s supporters wearing red and her opponents wearing the green and yellow of the Brazilian flag.

Some 25,000 protesters from both sides were outside the Congress building – separated by a makeshift 6.5ft high metal wall, that stretches for 0.6 miles.

The “yes” camp burst into celebrations even before the two-thirds of the votes had been secured.

The atmosphere has so far been peaceful and almost festive with music, fancy dress and people blowing trumpets and vuvuzelas.

Dilma Rousseff has vigorously denied any wrongdoing, and on April 16 wrote in one newspaper her opponents wanted to “convict an innocent woman and save the corrupt”.

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