Senator Fernando Bezerra (MDB-PE), former leader of the Jair Bolsonaro government, asked the Minister of Labor, José Carlos Oliveira, “the possibility of analysis and removal” of a farm belonging to Emival Caiado from the “dirty list”. The register gathers employers responsible for conditions similar to slavery.
A month later, Emival donated R$600,000 to the electoral campaigns of the senator’s three sons: R$250,000 to Miguel Coelho, candidate for governor, R$200,000 to Fernando Filho, candidate for federal deputy, and R$150,000 to Antônio Coelho, candidate for state deputy. All three are affiliated to União Brasil.
Ipec survey, released this Wednesday (21), pointed out that Miguel Coelho is in second in the race for the government of Pernambuco, tied with three other competitors, with 11%.
The businessman is a cousin of the governor of Goiás and candidate for reelection, Ronaldo Caiado (União Brasil).
Through official letter 189/2022, from the Federal Senate, dated July 13, Fernando Bezerra justified the request to remove Emival from the “dirty list” by stating that a term of adjustment of conduct had already been signed by the farmer with the Public Ministry of Work, fines were paid, and problems were solved.
Emival’s three donations to the campaigns were recorded on August 16, according to the website of the Superior Electoral Court.
Questioned by the report about the letter, the ministry explained, this Wednesday (21), that the demand was analyzed by the technical area and that “there is no legal basis for withdrawal” based on it. And he reinforced that “there is no illegality in the inclusion of the name of the employer in question in the aforementioned register”.
Fernando Bezerra, through his adviser, said that the Union was “condemned to promote the prompt definitive exclusion of the name of Emival Caiado Filho” from the black list, referring to an August decision. But that argument was not in the letter he sent to the ministry in July.
Regarding Caiado’s donations to his children’s campaign, he said that “they are legal”. The senator did not respond to questions about the reason for sending the letter to the Ministry of Labor and Social Security. The senator’s term ends in early 2023, and he is not a candidate for reelection.
Regarding the donations made to Bezerra’s children, Emival Caiado stated that he lived with the three for six months in Petrolina: “They are extremely honest people.” According to the businessman, they represent “a new policy, where you have honest, dignified and decent people”.
And he said that despite not being “aware” of the request made by Bezerra to the Ministry of Labor, the request by the emedebista would be “irrelevant”, given “that this has already been resolved by Justice”. “If he asked, more than fair, given that Justice has already decided,” he said.
Miguel Coelho, Fernando Filho and Antônio Coelho were approached to comment on the donation, but so far they have not responded to the request.
Decision of the Labor Court in Tocantins, on August 23, determined that the businessman be removed from the blacklist. The communication reached the government only this Wednesday (21), and the name was still on the list this Thursday morning. The Attorney General’s Office must appeal.
Prosecutor Lys Sobral Cardoso, head of the National Coordination for the Eradication of Slave Labor of the Public Labor Ministry, states that “the MPT’s conduct adjustment terms have the function of regularizing conduct and guaranteeing reparations, but not removing employers from the blacklist “.
Inspection rescued 26 cattle farm workers
The special mobile inspection group, formed by the Labor Inspection, the Public Ministry of Labor and the Federal Highway Police, found 26 workers in conditions similar to those of slavery on the property, dedicated to raising cattle, in August 2010.
Most were housed in canvas shacks on the dirt floor at isolated points on the property, without access to potable water, electricity, beds, bathrooms or enough food for their needs, according to the inspectors.
Work tools and fuel for chainsaws were deducted from the workers’ remuneration, who also did not receive protective equipment. Some had their documents withheld and did not rest even on Sundays. Journey records pointed to more than 13 hours a day.
The names of Emival Caiado, as well as that of the Santa Monica farm, were included in the register on June 9, 2021 after a long process of infraction notices. Due to an injunction by the Labor Court, the name was deleted on April 28, being returned by another decision on May 30. The owner appealed again and got the decision in late August.
“With injunction after injunction, Emival managed to maintain its commercial activity at an almost normal level until today”, laments Friar Xavier Plassat, coordinator of the campaign against slave labor at the Pastoral Land Commission (CPT).
“It is still impunity in view of the years that have passed between the assessment and entry on the list”, evaluates prosecutor Lys Sobral Cardoso. The employer continued to sell its production to meatpackers.
In another interview with Repórter Brasil about the case, in June this year, Emival Caiado says he considers himself the target of a “great injustice” and that the only problem found on his farm was an uncovered water tank – which contradicts the various notes in the inspection report. And he alleges political persecution aimed at targeting his cousin governor.
“It makes me very upset to be on the list. 10 years ago we had a hostile inspection on a farm. A complaint was made, which reached the hands of someone linked to the PT. We are stigmatized, they try to attack Ronaldo looking for things with my name”, believe.
At the time of the workers’ rescue operation, Ronaldo Caiado’s adviser told Repórter Brasil that he does not answer for the conduct of other people and that he does not defend those who commit crimes.
Dirty list is used to manage social risks in business
In his letter, Senator Fernando Bezerra reiterates the analysis for the removal of the Santa Monica farm from the register “so that the establishment can finally fully resume its production, respecting the highest standards of conduct and governance”.
Although the ordinance that provides for the blacklist does not require a commercial or financial blockade, it has been used by Brazilian and foreign companies, as well as banks and investors, for risk management. This made the instrument a global example in the fight against slave labor, recognized by the United Nations.
Created in November 2003 and provided for in an inter-ministerial decree, the “dirty list” publishes names caught in inspection after administrative defense in the first and second instances. When the employer questions the records, he can postpone inclusion in the list, but one day it arrives.
The individuals and legal entities included remain related, in principle, for two years. However, there is the possibility of signing an agreement with the federal government and being suspended from the register. To do so, they must commit to complying with a series of labor and social requirements.
In September 2020, the Federal Supreme Court reaffirmed the constitutionality of the dirty list, by nine votes to zero, when analyzing the Argument of Noncompliance with Fundamental Precept (ADPF) 509, filed by the Brazilian Association of Real Estate Developers (Abrainc).
The suit argued that the registry illegally punished employers caught in this practice by disclosing the names, which could only be done by law. Minister Marco Aurélio Mello, rapporteur of the case, ruled out this hypothesis, stating that the instrument guarantees transparency to society and that the interministerial ordinance that maintains the list does not represent a sanction – which, if taken, is by decision of civil society and the business sector. .