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Dilma Rousseff's impeachment hearings begin in Brazil
Saturday April 16, 2016 8:55 AM, IANS

Brasilia: Brazil's Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of the National Congress, started the three-day hearings on whether to impeach President Dilma Rousseff on charges of manipulating government accounts.

On Sunday, members of the National Congress will officially vote on the matter. A two-thirds majority is needed to send the motion to the senate, Xinhua news agency reported.

If the senate endorses the move, Rousseff will be suspended from office for up to 180 days while an impeachment trial is held.

On Friday, Chamber of Deputies President Eduardo Cunha and former justice minister Miguel Reale Junior opened the debate which featured deep rift among representatives over the issue.

The former justice minister said the illegal fiscal manoeuvres allegedly approved by Rousseff were "a crime against the nation" which she hoped would hide the country's true financial state from the public.

Following Reale's statement, Attorney General Jose Eduardo Cardozo said Rousseff had not committed any wrongdoings as the fiscal manoeuvres used to delay some payments to state banks were legal resources allowed by the courts at the time.

In a country rampant with structural corruption and bribery scandals, Rousseff has yet involved in any investigation, Cardozo noted.

Friday's session proceeded with party leaders making case for and against the impeachment till the end of the day.

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