Rio de Janeiro: Far-right congressman Jair Bolsonaro will be sworn in as Brazil’s new President on Tuesday, the media reported.
A former army Captain, the 63-year-old Bolsonaro won the presidential election by a wide margin against Fernando Haddad of the left-wing Workers’ Party on October 28, 2018, the BBC reported.
He was propelled to victory by his campaign promises to curb Brazil’s rampant corruption and crime. But he has proven a deeply divisive figure whose racist, homophobic and misogynistic remarks have angered many.
Despite portraying himself as a political outsider during his campaign, Bolsonaro served seven terms in Brazil’s lower house of Congress, the Chamber of Deputies, before being elected President.
He has been a member of several political parties but is currently in the Social Liberal Party (PSL).
Before becoming a politician, Bolsonaro served in Brazil’s military, where he was a paratrooper and rose to the rank of Captain.
During his time as a lawmaker, he represented the interests of the armed forces and since his election he has named seven former military men to key ministries.
Brazil only returned to democracy in 1985 after more than 20 years under military rule and some critics see his election as a threat to the country’s democracy.
Since being elected, Bolsonaro has repeatedly stated that he is committed to democracy and that he will abide by the Constitution.
But previous comments he has made endorsing the use of torture and disparaging women, gay people and Afro-Brazilians have left many worried.
Bolsonaro has been very clear about who he considers to be his international allies and those he views as foes.
US President Donald Trump is “an example” to him, and Bolsonaro has promised to follow the US and relocate Brazil’s Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.