As Brazil observes a further increase in the number of cases and deaths from the coronavirus, the Foreign Ministry has announced a new date for the competitive entrance examination for the diplomatic career, scheduled for April 11 in 26 capitals and in the Federal District.
The notice was published on February 18, in the Federal Official Journal, and ratifies a first document, dated June 29 of last year, which announced the test for the month of August. At that time, Brazil was experiencing its first peak in the pandemic and was recording a moving average of 33,400 infections and 1,006 deaths per day, according to data from Our World in Data.
However, the performance of the examination was called into question by the Federal Prosecutor’s Office. The protests presented to the agency led to an investigation into irregularities in the performance of the test – which ended up being suspended – during the health crisis.
In the confidential document, obtained by Folha, sent at the time to the Rio Branco Institute and to the American Development Institute (Iades), responsible for applying the test, the MPF recommended extending the date “until the situation of health crisis caused by Covid – 19 is controlled at least in the country ”.
Today, Brazil faces its worst moment of the pandemic. The moving average of deaths hit a record for the ninth consecutive day, with 1,497 deaths this Sunday (7), according to the press consortium formed by Folha, UOL, O Estado de S. Paulo, Extra, O Globo and G1.
With 79,237 cases in the past 24 hours, the country has added 11,018,557 infections and 265,500 deaths since the start of the pandemic. The situation is critical in all parts of the country and there are even collapses in some places. The occupancy rates of intensive care units are over 90% in several capitals.
In addition, vaccination continues at a slow pace and has already faced challenges such as lack of inputs, an unsuccessful attempt to import, and even the government’s rejection of 70 million doses of the immunizer produced. by Pfizer.
The reissue of the announcement brings no news regarding preventive measures for Covid-19, maintaining the previous text in which Iades is responsible for preventive measures, such as the use of masks and other personal protective equipment by employees and candidates, the availability of alcoholic gel in rooms and points of circulation and rapid screening at the entrance of candidates.
The call also provides for the “constant disinfection of most affected surfaces, such as handrails and doorknobs”, a minimum distance of 1 meter between candidates, the delivery and collection of all evidence in individual envelopes and a strict control process for the use of bathrooms “Avoid simultaneous use and encourage the practice of hygiene and good asepsis”.
As in the June announcement, there is a promise to issue a press release on March 30 with “instructions, procedures and protocols that will be adopted on the day of testing due to Covid-19.” As reported to Folha, there are already new representations in the MPF questioning the performance of the test.
Last year, prosecutors recommended the postponement, arguing that holding the competition at the height of the pandemic at that time would exclude applicants with symptoms of Covid-19 or in isolation, violating the constitutional principle of a great deal. accessibility to public functions.
In addition, it would violate the principle of isonomy by ignoring the fact that the coronavirus situation varies from state to state. “The imposition of this test date on candidates, in the current situation, subjects them to the need to choose between non-compliance with the rules that determine isolation in the event of contagion or contact and social distancing in all case, and the waiver of the right to participate. in the public tender, ”the document states.
In the text, the MPF also said that, “urged to present information, the Rio Branco Institute has not presented any public interest reason to justify the need for the first phase of the competition to be carried out immediately, or for signal the impossibility of postponement ”.
Folha contacted Itamaraty to respond to the decision to retest, but only got a response when this report was released.