Rio de Janeiro: Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva emphatically ruled out the possibility of seeking a return to the presidency in 2015, as long as his favoured candidate wins October elections to choose his successor.
Government Chief of Staff Dilma Rousseff "has to create her style, her face and to do her things. And I, like a fan in the stands, will have to cheer for her achievements and root for her to be successful and do what is best," Lula said in an interview that the daily O Estado de Sao Paulo published on Friday.
Rousseff is expected to be designated on Saturday as the presidential candidate of Lula's Workers' Party (PT), and the very popular outgoing president, who is set to leave office on January 01, said he expects her to seek re-election in 2014.
"Whoever is elected president has the legitimate right to be a candidate for re-election," Lula said. "That is the number one priority."
Many analysts have predicted that a government led by Rousseff would be more left-wing than Lula's, but the outgoing President did not appear to be worried.
"I have full confidence in Dilma, in that she will know how to do the right things for this country," he said.
"I want to believe that the PT is so wise that the PT will not throw in the bin the experience accumulated by the party itself, whose government has the approval of 72 percent of public opinion after seven years in power," he stressed.
"That is a wealth that not even the most nervous of Trotskyists would be able to waste," Lula noted.
According to opinion polls, Rousseff currently stands second in the race for the presidency, although she appears to be catching up on Sao Paulo Governor Jose Serra.
First Published: Saturday, February 20, 2010, 09:50