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Bolsonaro comes under scrutiny for military procurement of penile implants and viagra

  • A Brazilian lawmaker said he compiled government spending data that shows the military bought Viagra.
  • According to him, the army spent public funds on 35,000 Viagra pills and 60 penile implants.
  • The Brazilian army said the pills were to treat high blood pressure in the lungs and they only bought three implants.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro is facing new scrutiny from his opponents after a lawmaker said he uncovered evidence the Brazilian military had approved and paid for more than 35,000 Viagra pills and 60 penile implants.

Federal Deputy Elias Vaz said on Tuesday he had obtained spending data from the Brazilian government’s transparency portal, which showed the country’s air force had received 28,320 of the impotence pills by the through eight purchases from 2020, while the Army and Navy received 5,000 and 2,000 respectively, according to local outlet UOL News.

“We need to understand why the Bolsonaro administration is spending public money to buy Viagra, and for such a large amount,” Vaz said, calling on the country’s defense ministry to explain the purchases, according to UOL News.

Vaz said the documents listed the tablets as Sildenafil – the drug’s generic name – instead of specifically mentioning Viagra – the drug’s brand name, Agence France Presse reported.

The Brazilian military said in a statement that it purchased the sildenafil pills to treat pulmonary artery


hypertension

or high blood pressure in the lungs caused by blockage of small arteries, according to the AFP.

But according to a report by the Brazilian newspaper O Globo, the dose prescribed by the military – 25mg and 50mg – is generally used to treat erectile dysfunction, not high blood pressure, which requires doses of 20mg.

Another opposition politician, Marcelo Frexio, federal deputy of the Brazilian Socialist Party, tweeted that he and Vaz had asked the Federal Prosecutor’s Office to investigate the purchases.

“Public money, which comes out of the pockets of all of us Brazilians, must be used to serve the public interest,” he wrote.

Later in the day, Vaz also says that Public expenditure data shows that the Brazilian military has paid for 60 silicone penis prostheses worth 3.5 million Brazilian reals, or $748,681, since 2020.

“The Brazilian people are struggling to get medicine…and yet a group [of people] is treated with expensive prostheses,” he said, according to AFP.

In a statement to G1 Globo, a local media outlet, the Brazilian military said it only purchased three of the prostheses in 2021 and used them for patients as part of its military health fund. The other prostheses listed in the data represented an “estimate” of implant prices, he said.

The statement did not address any purchases of penile implants from 2020.

Other politicians have joined the outrage targeting the Bolsonaro administration and the Brazilian armed forces.

“The curious case of a president who is slow to buy vaccines for the population and very fast to buy Viagra for the military,” tweeted a Niterói city councilor known as Professor Tulio.

Vice President of the Democratic Labor Party, Ciro Gomes, also tweeted“Unless they prove they are developing a secret weapon – capable of revolutionizing the international arms industry – it will be difficult to justify the purchase of 35,000 units of an erectile dysfunction drug. “

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