Brazil's former environment minister formally approved as Greeen Party's presidential candidate

10:17, June 11, 2010      

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Brazil's Green Party (PV) approved on Thursday the candidacy of former Environment Minister Marina Silva for next October's presidential elections.

The vice-presidential candidate chosen by the party is Guilherme Leal, owner of the well-known cosmetics manufacturer Natura.

In a latest poll, Marina Silva was placed third with 8 percent of vote intentions, far behind from the 37 percent of vote intentions of Lula's former chief of staff Dilma Rousseff of the Workers' Party (PT), and Jose Serra of the Social Democracy Party (PSDB).

Aged 51, Marina Silva left her post in the government of Lula da Silva in 2008, after five years as environment minister, for lack of support for environmental projects. At the occasion, she also abandoned the Workers' Party (PT) and became affiliated with PV at the end of last year.

Daughter of rubber tappers, the candidate was born in the state of Acre, in the heart of the Amazon Forest, and engaged in environmental fight with activist Chico Mendes, who was assassinated in 1988.

Despite being illiterate up to the age of 14, Marina Silva managed to graduate in History, becoming a major trade unionist and political leader, and in 1995 she became the youngest senator in the history of Brazil, aged 36.

During her career she received numerous international awards, including the Goldman Environmental Prize in 1996 and the Champions of the Earth, from the United Nations Environment Program, in 2007.



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