Sócrates “inundated” with invitations to talk politics and justice

As the country’s newspapers variously cover his alleged nefarious exploits, José Sócrates got “back on the road” on Saturday, in Vila Velha de Ródão, to talk “politics and justice” and affirm that his “political rights remain intact”.

“This is just the beginning,” his right-hand man and former MP André Figueiredo told followers on Facebook, while newspapers have referred to the fact that Sócrates’ phone “has not stopped ringing” since he was released from months of incarceration on suspicions of fraud, money-laundering and corruption on an apparently vast and complex scale.

Supporters and well-wishers are described as only too keen to hear from the former Socialist prime minister whose speech at Casa das Artes e Cultura last Saturday brought a standing ovation from hundreds, wrote Diário de Notícias.

Centring mainly on the iniquities of being deprived of his liberty for 11 months in the absence of any formal charges, Sócrates used the occasion to criticise President Cavaco Silva for his handling of the current political crisis in Portugal, saying no party with parliament against it can govern.

Expounding on the characteristics of democracy – saying it centres not on what a State can do, but what it can’t – Sócrates also alluded to a “hidden power” involving the justice system and Portugal’s media which he said needs to be checked.

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