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BRASILIA: Brazil’s top electoral court on Friday barred jailed former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva from running in this year’s presidential election because of his corruption conviction.

The widely expected decision removes a cloud hanging over Brazil’s most uncertain election in decades — though Lula’s lawyers have said they would appeal an adverse decision to the Supreme Court.

“What is at stake here today is the equality of all citizens before the law and the Constitution,” Judge Og Fernandes told the court in his vote to declare Lula ineligible.

Judge Admar Gonzaga, who as a lawyer worked for Lula’s handpicked successor Dilma Rousseff’s 2010 election, cast the decisive vote in the 6-1 decision that sealed the leftist icon’s ejection from the presidential election.

Published in Dawn, September 2nd, 2018