Marcelo suggests that former PGR officials be heard about surveillance of journalists

The President of the Republic and re-candidate for office, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, stresses that the controversial police surveillance of journalists predates the mandate of the current Attorney General and suggests that ex-officials should be heard.

Miguel Figueiredo Lopes / Presidency of the Republic handout via Lusa

In interview with radio “Renascença” and newspaper “Público”, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa was again questioned about police surveillance ordered by a prosecutor, without authorization from a judge, to two journalists investigating the e-mole case, a situation reported during this week and which caused controversy.

In reply, the head of state and presidential candidate began by pointing out that “this case refers to a period prior to the mandate of the current Attorney General [Lucília Gago]”, considering that “this makes the case, of course, of more sensitive judgment ”.

This is "an investigation that took place in 2018, before the beginning of the current prosecutor's mandate," he said.

“I think that the path that was announced at this point makes sense, which is to determine an inquiry to find out what happened. And as a result of this inquiry, there may be an explanation, if requested by the Assembly of the Republic ”, he adds, referring to the investigation process announced by Lucília Gago, who has been the Attorney General since October 2018, having succeeded to Joana Marques Vidal.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa defended that “everything that can and should be clarified by touching fundamental rights and values ​​within the framework of a democratic rule of law must be clarified - bearing in mind this sensitivity, which is, moreover, to refer to a period that it is not the present, it is the past ”, he stresses, once again.

In his opinion, “this requires clarification, of course, always safeguarding that, possibly, those responsible at the time, other than those of today, cannot be involved without being heard, since truly who is going to be heard is who they are responsible today ”.

“The institution continues, but it is always unpleasant to be talking about absentees and about the work of absentees”, he observed.

According to the President of the Republic and re-running for office, this is a matter of “important values ​​and rights within the framework of a democratic state of law” and therefore “clarifying the truth is all the more important”.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa had already spoken on Friday about the news of the police surveillance ordered by a prosecutor to journalists Carlos Rodrigues Lima, from the magazine Olá, and Henrique Machado, formerly Correio da Manhã and currently at TVI, who were investigating the case e-mole.

The candidate, who was speaking during a campaign action in Lisbon, replied that in his opinion it was “important that this initiative by the PGR to find out what happened” and equally “important that the parliament wants to find out exactly what happened, in which terms, this investigation, this investigation by the PGR was determined ”.

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