This Latino Week

Temer calls for an end to Supreme Court investigation, Leftist Honduran coalition selects TV star as Presidential candidate, Mexican woman wins marathon wearing sandals
by: 
Jim McKenna

Brazilian leader Michel Temer has alleged that evidence linking him to a corruption scandal has been falsified, and has asked the Supreme Court to stop their investigation into potential obstruction of justice until this issue can be resolved.

The move came as Temer decided to speak out about the case in a televised address, accusing one figure, Joesley Batista, of insider trading and manipulation of evidence. Batista, a billionaire businessman who provided audio tapes as part of a plea bargain, was referred to by Temer as a criminal. The aggressive move was a response to the controversy surrounding the audio tapes, which have helped to fuel demands that the President resign. After the speech, Temer attempted to adjust his position, with lawyers representing the President saying he would be happy to be investigated once the issue of tampering has been dealt with.

Temer also told the media that he would not resign, even if evidence shows him personally connected to the scandal in Brazil. The question of Temer’s succession is still prevalent, however, with many believing that the term would be completed by a figure equally minded to implement the pro-market reforms that Temer has focused on since becoming President last year.

Leftist Honduran coalition selects TV star as Presidential candidate

Honduras is gearing up for the Presidential elections, which will take place in November of this year. The current President, Juan Orlando Hernandez, is seeking re-election, and will face off against the broad left-wing coalition called the Opposition Alliance Against the Dictatorship. This week they decided to back the television presenter and journalist Salvador Nasralla, who presents some of the highest-rated shows within Honduras, and is generally considered a popular candidate with a long history of protesting government authoritarianism.

The coalition includes a variety of parties, including the Liberty and Refoundation Party (LIBRE) and the party of ex-President Manuel Zelaya, the centrist Anti-corruption Party (PAC), whose members include Nasralla. The coalition has focused on a constituent assembly, cheap petrol and free public services, as well as an obvious desire to end what they consider to be anti-democratic governance.

Nasralla is optimistic of overturning Hernandez’s mandate, and has a strong network of backers, including a few right-wing dissidents of the current President. He will be joined in his campaign by Xiomara Castro, the 2013 LIBRE Presidential candidate and wife of Zelaya.

Mexican woman wins marathon wearing sandals

María Lorena Ramírez, a 22-year-old from the Tarahumara community in Mexico, managed to win a 31-mile ultramarathon in Puebla, despite not using any professional running equipment. 500 runners from at least 12 countries took part, but were unable to beat Ramírez’s time of seven hours and three minutes.

The Tarahumara are infamous for their stamina and athletic ability, with the community live in very disparate settlements, and often run together as a group, viewing athletic prowess as an integral part of their culture. Yet the ability to win a marathon without any professional training still came as a shock, particularly due to the winner not only wearing sandals but a skirt and scarf. When she is not running, she works as a cattle herder, and estimated that she walks 10 to 15 kilometres every day.