Command of Minha Casa, Minha Vida generates arm wrestling in the MDB

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MDB wings dispute the command of the housing secretary of the Ministry of Cities, responsible for Minha Casa, Minha Vida —one of the main bets of the government of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (PT).

Despite the clash, members of the portfolio and the Civil House say that the plan to launch the new version of the social program around February 15th is maintained.

Meetings about the new model of the program are being held by other members of the Ministry of Cities while the secretary of the area is not official.

Hailton Madureira de Almeida, a career civil servant at the National Treasury and who held a position in the government of Jair Bolsonaro (PL), was even appointed in recent days to the housing secretary of the portfolio, but the Civil House went back and suspended the effects of the measure, as published in the Panel SA column

The situation created an unknown surrounding the subject. The Minister of Cities, Jader Filho (MDB), has told interlocutors not to give up the choice for the engineer.

Almeida entered the National Treasury in 2003 and stayed in the body almost uninterruptedly until the impeachment of former President Dilma Rousseff (PT), having reached the position of undersecretary.

In June 2016, Almeida went to the Ministry of Planning, at the time occupied by Dyogo Oliveira, who succeeded Romero Jucá in charge of the portfolio during the government of Michel Temer (MDB). In 2022, he was appointed executive secretary of the Ministry of Mines and Energy under Adolfo Sachsida during the Bolsonaro government.

The Civil House claims that there was an operational error. Hailton was appointed to the Ministry of Regional Development, which no longer exists, before being handed over by its parent body, the Treasury.

Without the assignment, the appointment is not valid and, with the end of the MDR, the appointment to the Housing Secretariat became void. Now, Almeida awaits the assignment to be able to assume the post.

But the confusion over Almeida’s nomination was enough for the bench to return to the charge to place former minister Maurício Quintella Lessa, who has a political profile, in the position. The articulation is attributed to the leader in the Chamber, Isnaldo Bulhões (AL), close to Senator Renan Calheiros (AL).

Lessa was a minister for the former PR (current PL) and, in 2016, gave up the party’s leadership in the Chamber to articulate and vote in favor of Dilma’s impeachment.

He left the PL in 2021 when Bolsonaro joined the party. Lessa worked as infrastructure secretary for former governor of Alagoas Renan Filho (MDB), who was elected senator and, earlier this year, was appointed Minister of Transport for Lula.

When contacted, Lessa said there was still no clarity on the situation at the ministry. He has a series of meetings in Brasilia this week.

Members of the Ministry of Cities say that the MDB bench will have the right to choose sanitation and housing secretaries. Therefore, the folder insists that Almeida will return to the position after the correction of the flaw in his appointment.

Jader Filho’s nomination for the ministry had already been a reason for internal dispute in the MDB. Part of them worked for the indication of José Priante (PA), but Governor Helder Barbalho (PA) won the arm wrestling match and placated his brother.

New format of Minha Casa, Minha Vida will be presented in February

Amidst the imbroglio, the government is working to complete the design of the redesign of Minha Casa, Minha Vida by mid-February.

The new format of the housing program will be presented to the National Congress in the form of a provisional measure – which will take effect as soon as it is published.

The text will extinguish Casa Verde e Amarela, created by Bolsonaro to give the former president a social mark in the housing area. In its place, Minha Casa, Minha Vida, whose name is associated with the PT administrations, will be recreated.

In order to broaden his political base, Lula negotiated with the MDB that the Ministry of Cities would be part of the party’s bench in the Chamber.

For the secretary of sanitation, the bench wants to indicate deputy Leonardo Picciani (MDB-RJ). For mobility, the national president of the party, Baleia Rossi (MDB-SP), must choose a state ally.

Now, the government is still studying how the presentation ceremony of the new program will be. The president will be able to travel to another state in the Northeast, to the North or to the Midwest. Initially, the Planalto Palace predicted that Lula would travel to Bahia on January 20. This would be the landmark for the relaunch of the housing program.

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